PUTRAJAYA: P-hailing riders delivering food and goods will not be compelled to have a Goods Driving Licence (GDL) or a Public Service Vehicle (PSV) licence, says Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.
The Transport Minister also said food delivery riders will not be compelled to take their vehicles for checks at Puspakom inspection centres.
"I watched a few videos claiming that we are compelling all p-hailing riders to have a GDL and (take their vehicles for) compulsory Puspakom checks. This is all untrue," he said during a press conference at the Transport Ministry in Putrajaya on Wednesday (Aug 10).
Dr Wee said the ministry is planning to amend the Road Transport Act 1987 to regulate the p-hailing industry, where riders will be registered under a system and given a licence.
"We want a special vocational licence for p-hailing riders. I guarantee that this will not be the same as GDLs that are compulsory for heavy vehicles," he said.
"A token will be given to p-hailing riders and it will not cost more than RM10," he said.
Dr Wee also said there had been proposals to implement a one-year moratorium on this requirement.
"These are all proposals and it will be fine-tuned through several engagement sessions for the (proposed amendment) Bill.
He also said there are proposals for p-hailing drivers to undergo a short induction course for the licence.
"It might be just three hours," he said, adding that the course could also be done online.
"The method will be finalised and it will not be a burden," said he added.
He said the proposed registration of p-hailing riders would also ensure that riders' welfare will be taken care of.
"It is the government's wish to assist p-hailing groups, not make their lives harder.
"If we want to give aid, where can we obtain data on p-hailing drivers? Even ehailing operators do not have a full list. With this system, we will know with just one click," he said.
Meanwhile, Dr Wee said he was concerned by a recent Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (Miros) report, where the Integrated Transport Information System (Itis) monitored the driving behaviour of 16,038 riders at 11 roads in Kuala Lumpur.
The report found that 62% of p-hailing riders stopped in yellow boxes and pedestrian walkways, used handphones while riding (14%), beat red lights and made illegal U-turns (7%) and also went against traffic flow (3%).
Certain media reports recently claimed that amendments would be made to the Road Transport Act, the Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board Act and the Land Public Transport Act, which would require p-hailing riders to own a GDL.
On Monday (Aug 8), Dr Wee said the Cabinet agreed that amendments would be made to the laws.
Among the proposed amendments were for new licensing rules and to ensure that insurance protection is given to delivery riders and drivers.
Other proposed amendments also include reducing the minimum age of p-hailing riders from 21 to 18 years and eligibility for a vocational licence.
Recently, delivery riders in the country held a one-day strike to protest their plight such as low delivery fees.
Following the protest, a meeting was organised between the Transport Ministry, several delivery riders' associations and vendors.
More to come