Shortly after the new fares were put forth, public outcry was swift and unanimously against the move. In an unexpected turn, Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said that the Cabinet came to decide that its implementation was not suitable given the current situation and had asked SPAD to hold off its enactment.
He continued by saying that the Cabinet did agree that the reasons for it are justifiable, but that its announcement was ill timed given its close proximity to the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax on April 1. Such issues as the rise in costs, for maintenance and salaries, have to be addressed.
In a report by Bernama, “I think maybe we (Cabinet) is asking the matter to be postponed because the timing is not too suitable especially in light of the implementation of the GST. The burden of consumers may increase especially those staying in towns and using public transport and so on,” said the Deputy Prime Minister.
The announced increases would range between 20% to 67% for taxis and 22.6% for express bus fares.
Some taxi drivers, however, have already taken the liberty to recalibrate their meters (which in itself incurs charges from Puspakom of approximately RM55) to reflect the newly tabled fare rates prior to the Cabinet’s order of postponement and do not wish to lower them back down.
It was reported that 5,000 taxis in the Klang Valley have undergone meter recalibration.