The Terengganu state government will implement several initiatives to encourage younger generations to continue the tradition of riding a trishaw as a livelihood which is synonymous with the state especially around Pasar Payang.
State Tourism, Culture and Information Technology Committee chairman Ariffin Deraman said among the initiatives was to reintroduce electric trishaws in the near future.
“The state tourism department has 10 electric trishaws but they still retain the traditional features of Terengganu. Riding a trishaw can be a new source of income for young people by taking into account the influx of tourists to the state, ” he told reporters recently.
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Ariffin said only about 20 of the 48 registered trishaw riders were still active while the rest had retired due to age and health factors.
He added the state government also planned to station the rickshaw service near the Islamic Civilisation Park, an Islamic heritage park at Wan Man Island, Losong as a tourist attraction.
Meanwhile, Abdullah Muhammad, 64, who has been a trishaw rider for three decades, supported the state government’s move.
“My 23-year-old son is keen to continue the tradition because he doesn’t want the industry to die. But the declining income is quite worrying for him. So, I support any move by the government to revive this industry, ” he said.
He said among the reasons why riding a trishaw is not a lucrative business is because many tourists choose to visit the city by using their own vehicles or e-hailing services.
For Omar Awang, 75, who has been a trishawman for 45 years, his average income of RM300 a month was barely enough for him and his wife to get by.
“The daily income is uncertain. There are days when I can get two or three customers some days I get none at all, ” he added.
But Omar, being the longest-serving trishawman in Pasar Payang, still wants to continue the work as long as he is able to as it is the only job he knows. — Bernama
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