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16 Feb 2021

PUTRAJAYA: Drivers of e-hailing vehicles, taxis, school buses, and tour buses who are recipients of the special aid under the Bantuan Prihatin Nasional (BPN) 2020 are exempted from having to re-apply for the RM500 one-off cash assistance under the Malaysian Economic and Rakyat’s Protection Assistance Package (PERMAI).

Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong said they would only need to be screened with their licenses.

“In order to expedite the payment process of the benefit, recipients who have been approved previously for BPN 2020, will be exempted from having to re-apply for this PERMAI assistance in 2021 and only need to be screened with their licenses,” he said in a statement today.

Wee said the PERMAI cash assistance would benefit 118,000 approved drivers and those who have yet to apply.

He said all taxi and rented car drivers who have fulfilled the eligibility criteria and approved under the BPN will be given automatic approvals for PERMAI, while all approved tour bus drivers would also be exempted from PERKESO contributions screening, and only needed to be verified via their driving licenses.

Wee said all approved school bus drivers, on the other hand, would be exempted from having to be registered again by their respective companies, and only needed to be verified via their vocational PSV licenses.

Meanwhile, the previous RM1,200 minimum earning cap for e-hailing drivers eligible for the BPN assistance had been reduced to RM700 under the PERMAI for the months of October, November, and December 2020, he said.

On 18 Jan, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced the RM15 billion PERMAI assistance package, with 22 initiatives to combat the COVID-19 outbreak, safeguard the welfare of the people and support business continuity.

Muhyiddin said the initiatives include the one-off financial assistance involving an allocation of RM66 million that will benefit 14,000 tourist guides as well as 118,000 drivers of taxis, school buses, rental cars and e-hailing vehicles.

Wee said the RM500 one-off cash relief allocated for e-hailing, taxi, school bus, and tour bus drivers was part of PERMAI’s 22 initiatives to protect the economy and the welfare of the people during the ongoing pandemic.

“Many drivers in the public transport sector continue to serve the community diligently amid the pandemic to ensure our food and supplies are delivered and people kept on the move. The government recognises that this group also needs some assistance to support their daily needs,” he said.

Wee said new applicants are urged to provide accurate and up-to-date information to the Land Public Transport Agency (APAD) according to the established criteria to ensure that the processing and distribution of their cash benefit would not be unnecessarily delayed. -Bernama