MPs to show the way with public transport, says Loke

PUTRAJAYA: In a bid to promote and encourage the use of public transport, free shuttle bus services will be arranged between KL Sentral and Parliament to help lawmakers, staff and media personnel have a hassle-free commute to the august House during sittings, says Transport Minister Anthony Loke.

“If lawmakers, including ministers, can use public transport, it is a good signal to the rest.

“I hope lawmakers will welcome this move.

“I will use this bus service,” said Loke, who is Seremban Member of Parliament.

Noting that thousands of parking spots were needed each time a sitting was in session, he said the initiative would reduce congestion and long queues at the Parliament building.

Loke added that he had spoken to Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Johari Abdul on the matter, but further discussions would have to be held with Parliament’s administration to iron out the arrangements.

“We will try to implement this in this (upcoming) meeting. Maybe we will do a trial run, but further discussions must be held with Parliament’s administration to ensure that safety measures are not compromised,” he said at a press conference at his ministry here on Friday.

“We will look into the mechanism for safety passes, and maybe one or two stops will be made along the way so they can stop and get their passes, and the distance (between the guard house and the Parliament building) is not far,” he added.

“I have spoken to Prasarana, and we will use the smaller buses so that they can easily be used in the Parliament vicinity.

“KL Sentral is a transport hub, and it is located close to Parliament and has several modes of transportation,” he added.

As for operating hours, he said the buses would start as early as 8am and would be available until the sitting was over.

“If the sitting is extended until 7.30 or 8pm, the bus services will be available after the sitting is over,” he said.

Visitors, including the press, were required to queue up at the guard house of the Parliament building to obtain their passes before entering the Parliament building.

On another note, he said the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Putrajaya Line Phase Two is expected to begin operations in mid-March.

“By mid-March, MRT 2 will operate from Putrajaya Sentral to Kwasa Damansara,” he said, adding that the Land Public Transport Agency (Apad) is currently conducting trial runs on the line.

He also dismissed notions that Malaysia lacked technical experts specialising in public transport, which has resulted in frequent LRT breakdowns, as a “sweeping statement” that is inaccurate.

He added that the recent breakdown at the Bandaraya LRT was due to a structural problem and not a technical issue.

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