Saturday August 12, 2006
Commuters stage protest
By NG SU-ANN
They held banners and placards bearing messages like No 2nd Chance and Bus Reform Now in the protest organised by social rights group Save Ourselves (SOS). Passing motorists honked to show support.
Group members also distributed flyers containing grouses about rude bus drivers, dirty seats, no issuance of tickets and irregular bus schedule.
Their spokesman Ong Boon Keong said such bus operators should not be given a second chance.
“This bus issue has been ongoing for the past 10 years. Enough is enough,” he said.
“They have been given too many chances,” he told newsmen at the one-hour protest which began at 12.10pm yesterday.
“It’s time the interest of the 200,000 bus commuters comes first and not that of the 300-odd bus drivers,” he said.
Ong said Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon had failed to fulfil the promise that he made to the people during the last general election.
“He had then said that there would be a good integrated public bus service,” Ong recalled.
State DAP secretary Danny Law said bus operators should not view public transportation only as a money making industry.
He added that the public bus service should be managed by a company in which the government had a stake.
On July 19, Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board chairman Markiman Kobiran said the board and the state government had agreed to give bus companies another chance by providing help before taking drastic measures like phasing them out.