THE case of the bus accident that claimed 37 lives at Genting Highlands is still ongoing. But the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) seemed to be doing nothing. They are more concerned with trivial matters that are cosmetics in nature such as standardising the colour of taxis throughout the country.
What is going on in the minds of these agency administrators? Did they believe that by standardising the colours the service level would improve? Accidents averted? The number of fraudulent taxi drivers decreases? Would changing the colour of taxis mean passengers will be treated better and the taxi rides more comfortable?
Taxis will be taxis whatever their colours. Look at other big cities the world over. Their taxis come in various colours. Yet their services are much more organised and orderly with passengers given priority. Their taxis are also bigger and comfortable.
SPAD Chariman, Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar should be talking about the comfort and safety of passengers first. Perhaps administrators and policy makers like them never ride in taxis. Hence they fail to notice how small and unsuitable some vehicles are as taxis, for when European tourists ride on them, they have to squeeze in and huddle up in the taxis.
Such matters are the ones that need to be given priority. Ensure that all taxis in the country provide comfort for passengers and ample boot space for passengers’ things.
That does not take into account taxis in the country that are akin to booby traps with their run-down presentation and not suitable at all as public transportation.
As Chairman of SPAD, Syed Hamid should not only get into a taxi during the launching of new taxis and just to be featured in the papers or television. He should travel the country and ‘enjoy’ the services of the various styles, features and shapes of taxis nationwide.
Then only can he recommend a policy that would really benefit the country and project a positive image of taxi services in the country.
Should the proposal to standardise the colour of taxis nationwide be approved, who will bear the cost of repainting the hundreds and thousands of taxis? Will taxi drivers be the ones to bear them?
If the taxi drivers themselves have to bear the repainting costs solely to please Syed Hamid’s idea, would they have the funds to do so?
Rightfully, the focus should be on efforts to raise the level of quality and comfort of taxi services and not on cosmetic changes only.
Make sure taxi sizes are comfortable enough for passengers. Standardise taxi sizes in the country so that foreign tourists travelling in taxis will experience the true meaning of ‘Malaysian Hospitality’ from the moment they step into one.
Prohibit small sized vehicles from being converted into taxis as this will only cause discomfort to passengers. Their colour is not is not important, what needed to be given priority are comfort and safety. -- MalaysiaGazette