Saturday, January 26, 2008

Datuk Seri CKC - Transport Minister? Really?

Datuk Seri , our road transportation system is not good in the first place. It is not good enough to see our Government concentrating on Air Asia's profitability, MAS, JetStar, and SIA.

We do need to fix Rapid KL. We do need on time busses, bus schedules etc. Government of Malaysia promised us RM 4 billion for better public transports. But I don't think it ever became a reality with reasons being "higher subsidy bill for petrol". For those who have been to overseas, we are all envy of the accuracy of public transports in terms of time and location.

Busses in Canberra and Sydney are so accurate in their time that once I was late for the bus by 30 seconds and I never boarded it cause it was already gone. Had to wait for another one. But in KL Sentral, when the time says 4pm for a bus to Subang, it might even arrive at 4.30pm or 5pm.

But that is not the main issue. Days, months and years have passed. Skip the damn paperwork Datuk Seri. Skip the Cabinet approvals etc. You are given a portfolio and placed in charge of the public transportation systems.

We have seen far too many issues with busses. I have sat in busses going over 120km, but some busses drive within 110km. The good busses I always travel with are Sri Maju (the one which Michelle Yeoh's dad owns) and Perak Roadways (heard its owned by a Dato Tajuddin if I am not mistaken).

And the latest news in The Star was troubling enough to hear. Some of my friends are close to one of the victims and it was a sad and tragic news. I have a friend who even booked an urgent flight back today from Australia to KL to pay his respects. I am so sad to see lives lost just like that.

Datuk Seri, enforce laws. Tell JPJ that the RM50 in wallets of the officers can wait. Use all the workforce and check the summonses of bus drivers. About 30 passengers put their lives on 1 single driver. And these drivers had summonses running into pages ? It seems to me the Ministry of Transport have their hands full on the aviation industry.

Perhaps they can use the aviation regulation and enforce it on the roads. Make sure these bus drivers have minimum wages so that they don't rush their busses here and there to make more trips and earn more bucks. When that is done, get the drivers' ethics and qualifications to be as good as the pilots.

Now, your experience in dealing with Air Asia, MAS, JetStar and SIA surely is helpful enough. And I believe too much time was spent there too!!! So take some cleanser, wash your face, take a refreshing bath and get to the desk to do some work Datuk Seri. Get all your staff and JPJ officers to be on the road and fix things right.

I can't say that you are not doing a good job. You are doing a good job and improving some systems. Rome wasn't built in a day. But lives are at stake here. Get the secretary to do the paperwork, get the lawyers to read it, get an emergency meeting in Parliament if it is to be a legislation. Forget about the elections. Forget about DAP, PAS or anybody. Just get it done. Fax it nationwide. Tell all officers to gather all bus drivers and check them all out.

Chinese New Year is coming soon. We all know how famous PUDU is with their 'bus potong'. Illegal busses, poor drivers and impatient drivers will be out. They will all want to rush their journeys, make more trips and earn more bucks in a day. More lives to be sacrificed? I certainly don't like that.

No CNY or holidays for the Cabinet of Malaysia. If there's a need to discuss in the meeting, get it done right away. This is a national emergency. We are all frustrated. And you will definitely not like an election to be held when voters are frustrated.

Make sure you give a ring to the Finance Ministry or whoever is in charged of accounting regulations. Get these bus companies some visits by tax officers and police. Get auditors and accountants there too. I believe bus companies should now produce social responsibility reports or sustainability reports. Let us know how many bus accidents were there, how "clean" are your drivers' backgrounds on the road, how many breakdowns, the number of summonses and whatever is necessary.

You know what I mean Datuk Seri. There are many things you guys in the Ministry can think of and implement. The public do not need to tell you. And we certainly do not want to hear

  1. Oh we will discuss this in the Cabinet
  2. This needs Cabinet and Parliament approval
  3. It is beyond our control , we can't control everything
  4. We will look into it
  5. No comments

Forget the red tape and approvals or meetings. Fix it now Datuk Seri !


Peter Khiew said...

Wonderful to come across your blog. Michaelians don't change and I could immediately recognise you when I saw your picture. A debater like you is irreplaceable. I remember your team of excellent debaters conquering Ipoh, the state and then went on to meet others from other states. Thank you for that wonderful moments. You have made SMI stands out among the rest.

lekor said...

Hi manifesto,

I must say that you are not being giving fair critic about Rapid KL. Great transformation has happened in the Rapid KL system in the past two years with city centre bus frequency of almost 5-15 minutes each, with main depot centres in KLCC, KL Sentral, Maluri, Titiwangsa etc.

But I am a bit wary about democratisation of public transport in KL. The emergence of two LCCT bus transfer company in KL Sentral had made the station no more than a wet fishmarket, with bus vendors haggling almost every passerby.

The prestige of KL Sentral has gone down to the level of our notorious Puduraya station.

Jimmy said...

lol. datuk seri ckc asking his colleagues from other ministry to help out? it's akin to throwing your efforts into the dumpster. they will say ok ok ok ok boleh boleh boleh consider it done or semua settle.

when you call up to enquire, besok boleh? lusa boleh? i tak senang mau c4 itu pompuan mongolia la sekarang ah choy, besok lin peh settle ok? atau lusa, besok i ada date dengan bini i kat hotel muar sana.

read this

too high a dream.

Hijaz Kamal said...

Well as a KLite, I generally see RapidKL a good organization which is bringing improvements to public transportation in KL. One of the good thing RapidKL has done is the Integration of LRT services and they'll soon rope in the KL Monorail, it means we'll soon can use all rail system(except KTM Komuter) on a monthly pass. RapidKL buses have also made a big presence in Kuala Lumpur and the buses are generally in good condition. Now there are also 1200 buses with LCD screens.

The buses may not have a timetable, but I dare testify that the frequency is reliable where if you wait for a bus, it will at most not be later than 30 minutes. But this is not the case on certain corridors such as Jalan Ampang and federal whighway during rush hours.

However, public tranportation is not expanding in pace with KL's population. The expansion of the LRTs has not found any conclusion while the city is oblivious to the immense potential of KTM Komuter which is cheaper than the horrendously expensive LRTs. This is what happens when Najib Razak says public tranportation is for the lower class, poor service and slow expansion for lower class people, which may even include KLites earning as high as RM500.

KL's public transportation may not be as good as Australian cities, but to quote a Singaporean at KTMrailway fan, it's still a good system by Asian standards and a Thai forumer in the same forum mentions that Bangkok residents actually envy KL's rail system.