SINGAPORE: Former S-League player Gaye Alassane will keep his Singapore citizenship despite his involvement in match-fixing.
Mali-born Alassane, who obtained his Singapore citizenship in 2003 through the Family Ties Scheme, was on Dec 7 last year served with a notice of proposed deprivation of citizenship under Article 133(1) of the Constitution.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), which did not name him, said on Wednesday (Jun 27) that minister K Shanmugam has decided against stripping the citizenship of a 43-year-old naturalised Singapore citizen based on the recommendations of an independent committee.
Channel NewsAsia understands that the individual is Alassane.
After his involvement in match-fixing was discovered, Alassane was detained and subsequently released on police supervision.
“Given the severity of his criminal activities, and the extent of his involvement in the syndicate, the Minister for Home Affairs had assessed that it was not conducive to the public good that he should continue to be a citizen of Singapore. The minister had therefore considered depriving him of his Singapore citizenship,” MHA said.
Alassane subsequently referred his case to a Citizenship Committee of Inquiry (CCOI), as provided for under the Constitution.
The CCOI is an independent committee made up of private individuals appointed by the Minister for Home Affairs. Its role is to inquire into the cases referred to it, consider all evidence and representations, and recommend to the minister whether the proposed deprivation should proceed.
After its inquiry, the committee recommended that the minister allow Alassane to keep his citizenship on compassionate grounds. It said it took into consideration Alassane’s strong family roots in Singapore, the service he has rendered to the community, as well as his conduct since his release.
“The CCOI observed that he has been earning an honest living since his release from detention and he has not re-engaged in any criminal activities,” MHA said.
“He also appeared to be very close to his children, playing an important role in their lives. His ex-wife and children had provided testimonials attesting to his love, attention and support for the children. The mosque where he performs voluntary community service has also attested to his good character.”
The CCOI was of the view that he appeared to be a “changed man who would likely not re-offend”, the ministry added.
“The minister has given due consideration to the CCOI’s assessment and recommendations, and has decided to give this individual another chance and not deprive him of his citizenship for now, subject to his conduct and behaviour," MHA said.
“Should he be found engaging again in any act that is against the public good such as returning to crime, the minister will not hesitate to exercise powers on behalf of the Government to recommence proceedings to deprive him of his Singapore citizenship."