Most of my fellow taxi drivers are not affected by UBER or Grabcar. We just do our job, stick to the rules, charge by the meter and Alhamdulillah our customers have continued to use our services, often times tipping us to show their appreciation.
What do affect us negatively, are the following:
1. SPAD ‘forcing’ us to rent taxis from crony companies by refusing to issue permits directly to drivers
Many people are not aware that for a Saga BLM, this rental comes up to more than RM1500 a month. Considering that monthly payment for a BLM is less than RM500, every month these cronies are effectively leeching RM1000 from each driver, all because they hold the permits that SPAD refuse to grant to drivers, ie, the poor sods who are actually doing all the work.
2. SPAD allowing certain parties monopoly on lucrative pick-up locations
Most people don’t know that taxis that wish to enter KLCC must pay a monthly ‘levy’. We can drop off passengers, but we can’t pick-up passengers unless we pay this levy. Others locations (KLIA, Terminal Putra, Subang Airport and Rawang KTM to mention a few) only allows ‘association’ members to operate there. Passengers are forced to use the taxis there instead of using one of their choice. Hell, I can’t even pick up my own mother from KLIA using my cab.
3. PUSPAKOM officers abusing their authority
I’ve had the misfortune of my taxi failing the inspection because the officer determine that my tint is illegal although the readings show that it is way within the stipulated limit. Yup, they can actually fail you simply because they want to.
4. SPAD arbitrarily changing the permit validity period
My taxi was originally permitted to operate until 2020. However, this validity was suddenly changed to 2017, reducing my car’s useful economic life by 30%.
Given the above, I’m guessing these taxi drivers are pissed because UBER and Grabcar drivers don’t need to go through the above to make a living. But honestly, their wrath should have been directed to SPAD, instead. I can only deduce that the cabbies most affected by UBER and Grabcar are those dishonest black sheep who refuse to use meter and always trying to fleece their customers.