Somewhere along the way, on a plush cushion, as the backside gets too plump and comfortable, and as the air conditioning starts freezing the bare head, someone has forgotten or pretends to ignore who they are working for.
Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) chairman Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar is proposing the e-hailing public transportation services be given a new name together with new terms to create an equal and fair platform for all the parties involved.
The Star reported that SPAD, he said, would also be calling for a press conference next week to announce details of the regulation for Uber and Grab car services.
“In terms of policy, the Government have discussed and decided on regulating the e-hailing taxi services. So, we will go into the details of its implementation next week. The decision may see changes in the rules and regulations or the implementation of new laws as well as the delegation of power,” Syed Hamid was reported by The Star as saying.
“What should be understood is that, we are not legalising Uber. The decision is actually to adopt the services under the country’s laws. I think there are a lot of things we need to address but whatever it is, everyone will be treated fairly and equally,” he said.
Does he understand that when you put something under the law, it is legalised – it cannot be illegal if it is under the law. Or is he saying, lets close one eye and as long as they are within loopholes of the law, we will take is as legal?
Yet, is he aware that SPAD was set up to ensure that passengers and commuters and the public who intends to use the public transport is provided with a proper public transport, not for him to build a free market with brawl and all taxi drivers and Uber drivers?
SPAD was set up mainly to execute the Land Public Transport Master Plan which was signed and approved by Parliament on 16 October 2013, and also to execute the Greater KL/Klang Valley Land Public Transport Master Plan.
The main objective of these two master plans is to “Achieve a safe, reliable, efficient, responsive, accessible, planned, integrated, affordable and sustainable land public transport system to enhance socio-economic development and quality of life.”
And in Syed Hamid’s own words, SPAD’s role is “to provide a safe, reliable, responsive, planned, integrated, affordable and sustainable, land public transport system, to support the county’s social and economic growth” by 2020 – four years from now.
SPAD’s work is to crack the whip on errant land public transport which does not do what it is meant to do.
If the taxis are not doing their work as they have been licensed to do, then SPAD should haul them in and take away their licenses – not make taxis out of Uber.
Uber is to city people, what is taxi-sapu to the rural folks. Only thing is we do not share Uber cars.
Does he even realise that the main reason Uber is getting more popular is due to pockets of taxi drivers who are thugs and who have taken the law into their own hands, simply because SPAD is too scared of them, or maybe in cahoots with them?
Many of us still use taxis, but the fear of getting cheated, threatened or fleeced is the main reaason why we are willing to opt for a car whom we do not know is registered and uninsured.
There are many decent taxi drivers out there and there are many decent Uber drivers out there, same as there are many hooligans among them.
Taxi drivers who are doing their jobs honestly are also afraid of hooligan taxi drivers – while some taxi permits are held by gangs. SPAD should be checking this out, not threaten the hooligans among taxi drivers by saying they will legalise Uber if the former does not behave.
SPAD should first clean up the taxi service in this country, namely the Klang Valley and then only talk about touching services like Uber’s.
Syed Hamid should be removed from his post – and pot – if he is smoking one, for the country’s transport system is no more less a jumble than it was when he first started heating up his cushioned chair.
He should be made to resign and be dragged through our existing lines of public transport to and fro ten times repeatedly before he is even allowed to chair anything to do with public transport again.
We need a SPAD person who knows what the public needs.