Cabbies Rushed To Get 1Malaysia Assistance Cards But They're Actually Readily Available

The Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) told taxi drivers two days after its launch that 67,000 1Malaysia Taxi Assistance cards are available.

Cover image via Coconuts KL

12,000 taxi drivers gathered late last week to receive the 1Malaysia Taxi Assistance card in Putrajaya. However, all hell broke loose as they rushed, pushed down barriers, and stampeded over each other to receive the card at the launch.

Image via Coconuts KL

SPAD said that the enforcement officers and police tried to immediately take control of the situation that happened on 13 April.

"This unfortunate incident occured when a handful of attendees did not follow the systematic crowd control measures upon entering the hall to collect the card," SPAD told Bernama.

30 people were reported to have been injured in the midst of the scramble.

The card, launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, was said to have been reloaded with a credit of RM800 for filling vehicles with petrol or natural gas at Petronas stations nationwide

It was announced that RM53.6 million was allocated for this programme and was set to benefit 67,000 taxi drivers. About 12,000 drivers were reported to have shown up at the event.

Image via Bernama

Najib said that the card is meant to assist the welfare of taxi drivers in the country with the rise of e-hailing services

He added that while the government encourages competition, it must be both healthy and fair, as reported by The Star.

While thousands of taxi drivers scrambled to get the cards at the launch, SPAD announced two days later that they are readily available

Image via Asia One

"Taxi drivers don't need to worry as 67,000 1Malaysia Taxi Assistance cards are readily available. The card will be activated once it has been collected by the taxi driver," SPAD said in a statement on 15 April, as reported by the Malay Mail Online.

It can be collected within three months (16 April to 16 July) from 10am to 5pm at the following SPAD offices — SPAD Kelana Jaya, SPAD Pulau Pinang, SPAD Kuala Terengganu, and SPAD Johor Bahru; and the following SPAD branches — SPAD UTC Kuantan, SPAD Melaka, SPAD UTC Ipoh, SPAD UTC Alor Setar, SPAD UTC Kota Bahru, and SPAD Langkawi.

SPAD also denied allegations that many people were infuriated that the card would only be distributed after the general elections, as thousands of taxi drivers have collected their card after it was launched, reported the Malay Mail Online

"If the allegations continue, SPAD will not hesitate to lodge a police report over those spreading the news to be investigated by the authorities," it stated.

For more information on the 1Malaysia Taxi Assistance card, head here.

You can watch the video of the 13 April incident here:

Funnily enough, madhouse scrambles similar to this happened recently too:

New rule in - Grab drivers are now required to follow the same laws and regulations as taxi drivers:

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