Published: 06 November 2017
2. The key proposed amendments to the Immigration Act (IA) will:
a) Empower Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers to exercise selected Police powers at the checkpoints; and
b) Allow the collection of personal identifiers from transit passengers.
Empower ICA Officers to Exercise Selected Police Powers at Checkpoints
3. The Integrated Checkpoints Command (ICC) was launched in 2015 to bring together various Home Team agencies operating at the checkpoints, under a unified command and control structure.
4. Under the ICC concept, at the checkpoints, we would want ICA officers to also perform protective security functions in support of Police officers. ICA officers will, therefore, need to be appropriately trained and empowered. This includes responding to incidents, conducting preliminary investigations, and containing the situation, if Police officers are not yet at the scene. This will help ensure that security incidents at the checkpoints are dealt with even more promptly.
5. In this regard, it is proposed that the IA be amended to empower ICA officers to exercise selected Police powers relating to search and seizure, security screening, examination and arrest, within and in the vicinity of the checkpoints.
Collection of Personal Identifiers from Transit Passengers
6. The Bill will also allow ICA to collect personal identifiers, such as photographs, passport details, and fingerprints, from travellers transiting through Changi Airport, if necessary. This can help enhance security.