‘Extend licence renewal deadline’

PETALING JAYA: Motorists comprising public vehicle operators and members of the public are calling for an extension of the Sept 30 deadline to renew their licences.

The deadline, they said, was necessary following a heavy backlog due to the limited appointments and types of transactions over the counter at the Road Transport Department (JPJ) and the post offices.

Malaysia E-Hailing Drivers Association president Daryl Chong said there were still thousands of e-hailing drivers waiting to renew their Public Service Vehicle (PSV) licences, which can only be done over the counter.

“While the online renewal method can deal with driving licence and road tax renewals, it’s not the same for the PSV licence, because each renewal requires the submission of the driver’s health certification by a doctor,” he said yesterday.

So far, he said a good number of the drivers who managed to get an appointment received dates much later than the Sept 30 deadline.

“Come Oct 1 and beyond, there will likely be many public service vehicles and drivers on the road illegally.

“If the enforcers come down hard on them, it’d be unfair because getting appointments have been difficult. That’s why many of them are worried now.

“We call on the JPJ to be considerate and to extend the deadline until the end of the year,” Chong said.

Weighing in, Malaysia Taxi Drivers, Rental Cars, Premium Executive Limo Association president Zailani Isaisuludin said JPJ should have more counters and give drivers sufficient time for this renewal exercise.

He said the deadline should be extended until December, as most taxi drivers’ incomes had been severely impacted before this.

“As more economic sectors are opening, this period will give drivers time to get some income and recover financially,” he said.

Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Taxi and Rental Car Operators Association committee member Siti Faradilah Aslah pointed out that not all drivers and members of the public were tech-savvy to carry out online renewals and that was why some needed to do so over the counter.

Members of the public who were also planning to renew their licences over the counter have also had their fair share of challenges.

A retiree who only wanted to be known as Charlie, 61, said he had been scanning the JPJeQ QR code for an appointment to renew his driving licence since July.

“I’m still trying after weeks of unsuccessful attempts,” he said, adding that he was unable to do an online transaction as he did not have an online banking facility.

Ariana Salleh, 43, from Shah Alam, is also unable to get a date on Pos Malaysia’s online appointment system despite numerous attempts.

“Both JPJ and Pos Malaysia’s appointment systems have been overwhelmed. They should give the rakyat more time to get things done,” she said.

JPJ announced on Aug 4 that holders of the Competent Driving Licence (CDL), Motor Vehicle Licence (LKM or road tax), Goods Driving Licence (GDL) and the PSV licence had until Sept 30 to renew their licences.

JPJ also urged vehicle owners to do renewals online via its MySikap portal or MyEG website.

For any other matters that cannot be done online, drivers are to make an appointment before heading to the JPJ counters.

On Aug 10, Pos Malaysia said an appointment for licence renewal was necessary to avoid overcrowding.

It began handling JPJ transactions at over 650 branches nationwide.

It said customers could book an appointment through the Outlet Finder feature at www.pos.com.my or through Pos Malaysia’s mobile application.

Since the first movement control order last year, several rounds of exceptions were given to motorists, allowing them to drive with expired licences and road tax, provided that the vehicle insurance is valid.

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