TRANSIT took note of this recent article discussing comments and feedback by Hulu Selangor MP P. Kamalanathan on the public transport system in the north of Selangor.
It was surprising enough to read of an MP taking a proactive step to examine the public transport system of his area, experience it for himself and give public feedback.
P. Kamalanathan has obviously done his homework on the issues that are concerning Malaysians and knows the power of the turun padang public photo opportunity.
Ensure frequent service, MP tells Rawang-Batang Kali bus operator (The Star)
Tuesday January 18, 2011
By STUART MICHAEL
THERE is still room for improvement in the bus service from Rawang to Batang Kali, said Hulu Selangor MP P. Kamalanathan.
He said the buses were not air-conditioned like the ones in the city and commuters had to wait for about an hour for the service.
He said those getting down at the new Rawang Bus and Taxi terminal had to take a five-minute walk to Rawang town to catch the bus to Kuala Lumpur or to the KTM Komuter station.
“This is inconvenient for senior citizens and the disabled,’’ he said.
Kamalanathan took a bus ride from Rawang town to Batang Kali to experience for himself what the commuters were going through.
“During my 35-minute journey with about 15 commuters, I noticed vandalised bus stops without roofs or signboard and that the driver stops randomly to pick up passengers.
“The driver also does not stop at designated bus shelters along the route,’’ he said,
He suggested that the Hulu Selangor District Council allow corporations to adopt and maintain the bus stops.
Kamalanathan also urged the council to encourage senior citizens and the disabled to set up stalls near bus stops.
“This will encourage them to be independent and not rely on donations and handouts.
“I hope the bus operator will increase the frequency of its service to half-an-hour and install air-conditioners for commuters to have a comfortable ride.
“The bus operators should ensure they provide good service to the people and not only focus on making profits. If the service is frequent and regular, more people will rely on public transport,’’ he said.
TRANSIT: Speaking from the perspective of the bus operators, “where is the money going to come from to pay for the additional costs?”
Kamalanathan said he would be taking bus rides in Bandar Sungai Buaya, Kuala Kubu Baru, Rasa, Kerling, Kalumpang and Hulu Bernam over the next few months to check on the situation.
As Hulu Selangor has a number of KTM Komuter stops, he is also planning to take a train ride to understand better what the commuters faced daily.
Again, we wish to express our kudos to MP P. Kamalnathan for taking a look at the public transport system for himself.
It suggests that he understands that his by-election victory is because of the public who voted for him and that he is responsible for Hulu Selangor.
It would be nice to see more MPs (of all parties) taking more proactive action to understand the public transport systems of their respective areas (whether they want to invite the media – or TRANSIT – to follow them is their own choice).
And TRANSIT reminds all Wakil Rakyat that our website and discussion forum is here as a source of knowledge and informed perspectives on public transport.
That said, we also have to ask why the Selangor Government is not being more proactive with public transport. Our proposal for “public transport officers” at each of the 12 local councils, plus a “Selangor public transport caucus” (where these officers could discuss public transport issues with other stakeholders) appears to have fallen flat.