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.
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
Najib said that the card is meant to assist the welfare of taxi drivers in the country with the rise of e-hailing services
While thousands of taxi drivers scrambled to get the cards at the launch, SPAD announced two days later that they are readily available
"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
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