NEA takes action against illegal hawkers at Paya Lebar

National Environment Agency officers placing food items into trash bags sold by illegal hawkers on Dec 16, 2018.

SINGAPORE (THE NEW PAPER) - Action has been taken against two illegal hawkers after they sold food such as mee bakso (meatball noodles) from a field at Paya Lebar.

A National Environment Agency (NEA) spokesman told The New Paper on Tuesday (Dec 18) that it took enforcement action against the two hawkers during an inspection on Sunday.

A video of the incident was uploaded to Facebook that day and shows three NEA officers placing the food items into trash bags. Plastic sheets could be seen strewn beneath a tree where people were gathered.

Many bags and containers, believed to contain cooking materials and raw food items, were placed on the ground next to the tree.

The officers were also seen clearing a cooking pot on a portable stove.

A woman can be heard speaking Bahasa Indonesia in the video, warning others of the enforcement action by the Singapore authorities.

The area next to City Plaza is popular with foreign domestic workers, and many gather in the area on weekends.

The spokesman said NEA received four reports this year on illegal hawking of food there.

"NEA takes action against illegal street hawkers, whether locals or foreigners, as unregulated street hawking impacts public health and safety," she said.

"We will continue to take firm and decisive action against any person who engages in illegal hawking activities."

The public is advised to report illegal hawkers by calling the 24-hour NEA contact centre on 1800-CALL-NEA (1800-2255-632).

Those found hawking illegally may have their goods seized and be fined $300, $400 and $500 for the first, second and third offences respectively. Upon the fourth and subsequent offences, they will be prosecuted in court.

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