IN PETALING Jaya, the penalty for wrongful usage of parking bays for the disabled (OKU) is steep, and yet the misdemeanour is rampant.
Under Section 36(2)(e) PPJ (PTLK) MBPJ 2007 (Amendment 2012), the compound for misusing OKU parking bays is RM100, and if the vehicle is towed away by the enforcement officers, a maximum fee of RM300 will be imposed for its retrieval.
In the past 14 months, the total number of compounds issued by the Petaling Jaya Municipal Council (MBPJ) was 211, but only 69 have been settled.
And what about offenders who were not even issued compounds?
The best way to curb the problem would be not only for MBPJ enforcement officers to catch offenders, but also to have enforcement personnel from private parking companies join in the effort, said MBPJ councillor and lawyer Derek Fernandez.
“Although they are only allowed to issue parking tickets, they could help curb this problem as they do their rounds more often,” said Fernandez.
However, there appears to be some confusion over the OKU stickers used to identify a disabled person’s car as fake stickers are widely sold in hardware shops and bookshops, he added.
The problem, he said, led to MBPJ making it compulsory for the disabled to register with the council to receive an official OKU car sticker.
“Yet not many have heard of this, and this causes some disabled people to be fined when they unknowingly use fake stickers,” said Fernandez.
“Compared to Malaysia, countries in Europe are stricter.
“They charge a heftier sum in fine and in payment for storage of (towed) vehicle.
“The enforcement in Malaysia has to be tight, but a period of anger from affected parties is sure to ensue,” he said.