Train operator SMRT announced in a media release on Monday (26 September) that it had assembled a panel to review the appeal by two former SMRT train drivers, who had lost their jobs over a fatal accident at the Pasir Ris MRT station in March this year.
The National Transport Workers’ Union (NTWU) assisted the two former SMRT employees with filing an appeal to the management of SMRT against the dismissal.
“In response to NTWU’s appeal pertaining to the dismissal of two staff related to the fatal rail accident on Mar 22, SMRT has convened an appeal panel comprising senior management from business units – not from the Trains Group. The panel will review the appeal, and ensure fair and due process,” stated the SMRT media release.
It also said that the panel’s findings would not prejudice the ongoing investigations by various authorities. “SMRT shares NTWU’s concerns for the well-being of the workers and their families. SMRT will work with NTWU to secure employment soonest for the two workers while the panel reviews the case,” it added.
“SMRT and NTWU agree on the need to strengthen the safety processes and workforce culture in the company. NTWU will support SMRT’s efforts to promote a safer work environment for all workers,” the announcement said.
On 22 March, the accident victims, Mr Nasrulhudin Najumudin, 26, and Mr Muhammad Asyraf Ahmad Buhari, 24, were tasked to examine a signaling condition monitoring device along the tracks near Pasir Ris MRT Station, along with a joint engineering team. The two SMRT maintenance workers were hit by an oncoming train when they walked onto the tracks for their on-the-job training.
Mr Rahmat Mohd, 49, the train driver involved in the accident in March, was assigned to a non-driving job after the accident. According to The Straits Times, he was called into the SMRT office on 13 September for an internal inquiry and discharged immediately afterward.