The bus drivers’ “strike” in Singapore today has been picked up by the foreign media. And no wonder. It’s so unusual. Strikes don’t occur in Singapore.The bus drivers employed by SMRT, which also runs taxis and commuter rail, are reported to be from China. They are aggrieved because their Malaysian colleagues have been given bigger pay hikes, according to local media.
Protests and strikes are not unknown in China. But some on Twitter are expressing shock and anger at such an incident in Singapore. Some say they should be sent back to China. Many Singaporeans are unhappy about foreigners coming to work in Singapore. The National Transport Workers Union has urged the drivers to return to work.
Here’s the first overseas report I saw on Google News. It’s from the NZweek website.
SINGAPORE, Nov. 26 — More than 100 Chinese bus drivers working in Singapore took medical leave and refused to go to work on Monday over differences in a recent pay rise.
The online edition of local newspapers said the bus drivers employed by local public transport operator SMRT were unhappy that the Malaysian drivers received a pay increase of 275 Singapore dollars (225 U.S. dollars) with one month bonus pay, while the Chinese drivers got an increase of 75 Singapore dollars without any bonus.
And here’s what’s being reported and said on Twitter.