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10 DEC 2020

SANDAKAN: Sabah UMNO has urged the federal government to consider extending a moratorium for Sandakan mini bus operators following the enforcement of Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) in the state.

Its communication director Ghazalie Ansing said that the party was concerned about the difficulties faced by the majority of 518 members of the Sandakan Mini Bus Operators Association (PPBMS) to generate income due to lack of passengers, which caused them to bear the burden of their loans and leases.

“Sabah UMNO fully support PPBMS’ request for the government to assist them in getting a moratorium extension from the related lenders such as private lease companies. “We also urge Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong to implement a comprehensive living assistance initiative for bus operators such as through the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD), that needs to be fine-tuned and be extended to all mini bus operators,” he said in a statement, here, today.

Ghazalie said that PPBMS also requested the government to consider giving a 50 per cent subsidy for their losses, as they are forced to operate with 50 per cent of passengers’ capacity, and providing a ‘one-off’ assistance along with other categories of public transport services such as taxis and e-hailing drivers and tourist guides.

He said that the association also hoped that the government would increase the age limit for buses to up to 30 years following the unsatisfactory economic conditions. - Bernama

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