CVLB admits to losing battle against cab drivers

I am sure that many Malaysians were shaking their heads today when they read of a recent press conference held by the Commercial Vehicles Licensing Board – in which they admitted their total failure to resolve issues with the existing taxi service.

Apparently it is not for lack of trying. The CVLB says that they have continuously tried to make a difference.  Sadly, their efforts are wasted – probably because they keep using the same methods even if they are not working.

This is the fundamental weakness of the CVLB – it issues too many permits and its enforcement is powerless – as witnessed by the taxi driver who deliberately overcharged a CVLB officer, or the taxis being driven by Pakistanis – as the permit owners sat back and let the money roll in.

Consider that it was in the middle of last year that CVLB was trying to get more permits issued – this time to individual owner operators – as if having more taxies on the road would improve the current situation.

Now the CVLB admits that it cannot handle the taxi situation – perhaps they are hoping for the sympathy of the public?

There is a solution, however.  The CVLB should give up budget taxi service and just keep the Premier (Yellow) and Executive (Blue) taxis – the newer and better looking ones – and merge them into one type of service – Teksi Bermeter.  These taxis can be retained as meter taxis and service the medium distance routes and make pickups along the main roads, at houses, malls, etc.

The budget taxis would be combined with the Kereta Sewa (Hired Car) to create another type of Taxi, Teksi Berkupon.  These taxis would be regulated by the local authorities and would have to operate from taxi stands designated by the local authorities.  The taxi stand would be operated by an officer of the Local Authority.  Inspection of Teksi Berkupon would be by the enforcement officers of the Local Authority.

Passengers would purchase their coupons from the taxi stand, which would be equipped with cash registers and Touch N Go readers.  Fares would be decided by the local authority at Council Meetings (subject to review) and would be clearly posted at the taxi stand so there would be no dispute.

The fares would be based on a stage-based or zone-based system and passengers would be offered discounts if they are willing to share a taxi with others.

This system would create a huge improvement to the existing system because it would offer passengers more choice and better safety and get the local councils involved in improving the taxi services.

Moaz Yusuf Ahmad