SINGAPORE — One of Singapore’s biggest money laundering probes is set to be in focus in Parliament, with more than 20 Members of Parliament filing questions on the matter.
The alleged abuse cases at Kinderland preschools will also be discussed when Parliament sits on Monday (Sept 18), along with the new public housing classifications and issues surrounding the Elections Department’s management of the voter list.
The billion-dollar money laundering case has cast the spotlight on Singapore’s framework of measures to detect such crimes.
Ten foreigners were arrested last month when the police raided Good Class Bungalows and luxury condominiums among other locations. They are either Chinese nationals or former Chinese citizens. Some hold multiple passports from other countries.
It also emerged during court hearings that one of the suspects financed the purchase of 10 units at luxury condominium Canninghill Piers.
Questions submitted by MPs include the magnitude of the assets seized despite Singapore’s strict anti-money laundering measures and what more can be done to prevent such crimes.
MP Foo Mee Har (PAP-West Coast) asked how the government will step up checks on people from high-risk “golden passport” jurisdictions and whether Singapore’s anti-money laundering laws need to be tightened.
Several MPs also raised questions about suspicious transaction reports made by financial institutions.
MP Vikram Nair (PAP-Sembawang) asked how many reports were lodged in relation to money laundering in the last three years and how many of those were acted on, while MP Sylvia Lim (WP-Aljunied) asked about the extent to which such reports were useful in uncovering suspected money laundering activities.
MP Louis Chua (WP-Sengkang) also asked about the proportion of real estate transactions that have been blocked after being reported as suspicious deals.
KINDERLAND CHILD ABUSE CASES
In the wake of alleged child abuse cases at two Kinderland preschools, MP Poh Li San (PAP-Sembawang) asked for an update on the investigations, how the Early Childhood Development Agency will improve standards of care and how whistleblowers reporting wrongdoing will be protected.
MP Wan Rizal (PAP-Jalan Besar) also asked what mental health support and counselling services were being made available to the affected children and their families.
Non-Constituency MP Hazel Poa asked whether the Ministry of Social and Family Development will consider bringing forward the deadline for childcare centres and preschools to install closed-circuit television cameras.
On the Sept 1 Presidential Election, Leader of the Opposition Pritam Singh asked about the names of 200 Singaporeans who were left out of the voter list although they said they cast their ballots in the 2020 General Election. Mr Singh asked how many times this has happened in the aftermath of past elections and what steps will be taken to prevent a reoccurence.
MP Tan Wu Meng (PAP-Jurong) also asked about the number of polling stations that experienced technical issues with the electronic voter registration system during the 2023 Presidential Election.
Three government Bills will be introduced on Monday — the Income Tax (Amendment) Bill, the Free Trade Zones (Amendment) Bill, as well as the Societies (Amendment) Bill.
The WP’s Ms Lim also filed an adjournment motion on losses from scams and malware fraud. CNA
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