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Malaysia’s Road Transport Department is like an ol-skool car

POSTED BY Yamin Vong ON 07 June 2018

Memo:

To: Yang Berhormat Anthony Loke, Minister of Transport

From: Yamin Vong

Re: Modernise the Road Transport Act 1987

 

The Department of Transport is one of the last old-school departments in Malaysia. The way forward is to overhaul the Road Transport Act 1987 and YB Loke, you’re the man we’re banking on.

RTD’s mySikap system is archaic and unknown to most people. Above that, it has no ability to update car owner’s address which is a requirement under Clause 13 of the RTA.

We trust that you will steer the Ministry of Transport towards a comprehensive solution that makes life more productive and safer for Malaysian motorists, motor-cyclists and vehicle owners.

You would have realized that the RTD is stuck in the 1960’s compared to the Malaysian passport section and the EPF’s withdrawal counters.

Let’s speak about the Takata airbag issue and the recall of cars as a case in point of the need to improve the RTD’s service to the people.

So far, eight Malaysians have died from the over-powerful explosion of Takata airbags since the recall was notified to the vehicle owners of eight car brands – from BMW to Toyota – starting from three years ago.

Statistically, more motorcyclists die in a week than Takata air-bag victims in three years.

On the annual death toll of 6,000 a year, there is an average of sixteen people who die in traffic crashes in Malaysia every day

 

According to your RTD data, 358,000 recalled cars have not been fixed yet and now you have directed the black-listing of these cars until they are fixed.

Then you discover that the RTD database is outdated; that many car owners have not updated their change of address as required under Clause 13 of the RTA 1987.

Perhaps it would be wiser to get your RTD and MOT agree on an objective, do a cost-benefit analysis and an impact assessment.

If the objective is to minimize the loss of lives from traffic crashes, then put the motorcyclists on the top of the list. We should prioritise the inculcation of safety habits of motorcyclists and the enforcement of laws.

Come to Kota Damansara and see for yourself the laxity in the wearing of helmets by the youngsters riding their motorcycles in the evening. Is the enforcement lax because the Police are mostly Malay and they sympathise with the unsafe riders, who are mostly Malays?

Don’t go overboard on the recall issue. It is the duty of car companies to contact the car owners. All that they want is the updated address and that’s what they, especially Honda, have failed to get from the RTD until your intervention.

The car companies have a schedule so that they can fix the most urgent jobs first. Some cars get the driver’s side airbag changed first and the passenger’s airbag later when there is stock. They have their priorities and the RTD’s job is to supply the data on a timely manner to the car companies who need to recall cars, whether it’s for the Takata airbags or ignition key failures.

 

As for the mySikap system, it was introduced in 2013 and it’s a failure if you consider that most of the motorists think that it refers to their ID, the myKad.

mySikap  is mostly aimed at new and used car dealers.

Dear YB, you should aim towards reforming the RTD in a systematic way so that it enters the new world of technology.

We must go to the JPJ office to affix our thumbprint when we change ownership. How antediluvian is that in this age of face recognition and voice recognition? Of course, there’s also about 3,000 car dealers who have the eAuto.my system to register change of car ownership off-site. Who knows that?

Let’s have a system where Malaysian motorists can perform transactions on-line and benchmark the Road Transport Departments of Thailand, Australia and the UK.

Dear YB Loke, we would be very grateful if you could increase the productivity of Malaysian commercial vehicle owners and the automotive fraternity vis-à-vis Puspakom and how this vehicle inspection bottleneck encourages corrupt practices.

YB, please drive our Ministry of Transport and our Road Transport Department into the new age of systematic safety and productivity equal to the best in Oceania.