Preservation of the Peace Act
(Original Enactment: Ordinance 6 of 1872)
REVISED EDITION 1985
(30th March 1987)
An Act to make provision for the preservation of the peace.
[11th October 1872]
2. Whenever it appears to be necessary for the preservation of the peace of Singapore, the President may by proclamation to be published in such manner as seems fit declare that Singapore shall be subject to the following provisions of this Act, and every such proclamation shall remain in force until cancelled.
—(1) Whenever any person is found during the continuance of a proclamation under this Act unlawfully, riotously or tumultuously assembled to the disturbance of the peace and to the terror of members of the public, any Justice of the Peace may, in an audible voice, warn those persons that they are contravening the law, and require them to disperse and depart to their habitations, or to their lawful business.
(2) All persons remaining so assembled after such warning may be dispersed or taken into custody by any police officer or special constable, or by any other person acting under the orders of a Justice of the Peace, and shall be liable to the punishment prescribed in section 145 of the Penal Code [Cap. 224].
(3) If any person so warned to disperse is hurt, maimed or killed in the dispersing, seizing or apprehending, or the endeavouring to disperse, seize or apprehend, the person hurting, maiming or killing him shall be free, discharged and indemnified from the consequences except on evidence of gross carelessness, wantonness or malice.
—(1) During the continuance of any proclamation under this Act no person, unless in the employment of the Government, or unless authorised by the Government, shall carry on his person, or have in his possession any arms or instruments capable of being used as offensive arms unless they are the tools of his trade, or unless he can show that they are intended to be used for some lawful purpose, of which the burden of proof shall be upon him, nor any ammunition for those arms or instruments.
(2) Any Justice of the Peace may enter with or without a warrant, and with or without assistance, and may authorise any police officer or special constable to enter without a warrant, and with assistance, and by force, if necessary, into any dwelling-house or other building, and into any place in which he may suspect that any such arms or instruments or ammunition contrary to this Act may be, and those arms and ammunition may be seized and confiscated.
(3) Any person who is found contrary to this Act carrying, or having in his possession any such arms or instruments or ammunition except such as may reasonably, in the opinion of the court, be in his possession shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $400 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 4 months or to both.
5. During the continuance of any proclamation under this Act any Justice of the Peace may enter with or without assistance, or may order any police officer or other person to enter without a warrant and, with assistance and by force, if necessary, into any dwelling-house or other building, or into any place in which he has reason to suspect that persons lately riotously assembled or engaged on any unlawful purpose have made their escape, or in which he has reason to suspect that persons about to break the peace are assembled, and those persons may be apprehended and taken before a Magistrate’s Court to be dealt with according to law.
6. Any person who during the continuance of any proclamation under this Act —
unlawfully combines to procure a stoppage of the sale or transit of provisions or other articles;
unlawfully combines to procure shopkeepers, dealers, or other persons to discontinue the sale or transit of any such articles; or
prevents or attempts to prevent any person from purchasing, or from being supplied with, any such articles,
shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $300 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months or to both.
7. Offences under this Act shall be triable by a Magistrate’s Court or District Court.
8. No action shall be brought against any person for anything done or bona fide intended to be done in the exercise or supposed exercise of the powers given by this Act.