KUALA LUMPUR: There is no requirement for those 70 years old and above to surrender their driving licences, says Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.
The Transport Minister told the Dewan Rakyat his ministry had never made such a requirement as driving competency is not based on an individual’s age.
“If you look at YB Langkawi (Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad), he can drive very well. Far better than those people who drive recklessly on the roads.
“So, there cannot be a discrimination for those who are aged 70 years and above.
“That is why I said it is not the stance of the ministry and we have no intention of changing it,” he said in reply to a supplementary question from Syed Ibrahim Syed Noh (PH-Ledang) during Minister’s Question Time.
The minister recently gave the assurance that senior citizens will be issued driving licences if they are able to operate a vehicle.
“Retracting or limiting senior citizens’ driving licences should be the last resort once it is proven they are unable to drive,” Dr Wee had said in a Facebook video on Saturday, adding that the issue needed a broader and more holistic view instead of focusing on age alone.
Bukit Aman Traffic Investigation and Enforcement Department director Comm Datuk Azisman Alias had on Friday proposed that the government limit the issuance of motor vehicle licences to senior citizens.
He said this is because the health condition of senior citizens could contribute to road accidents.
He added that senior citizens should also undergo a medical check-up and get approval from a doctor to ascertain that they are fit to drive.
“Elderly people are more likely to suffer from health conditions such as Alzheimer’s and blurred vision, which can indirectly cause road accidents.
“There was a case where a senior citizen was caught driving on a motorcycle lane. The government needs to look into this issue,” he had told a press conference.