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Tuesday, 21 March 2017 | MYT 11:38 AM

Cabbies protest against GrabCar and Uber outside Parliament

KUALA LUMPUR: A group of taxi drivers protested against popular ride-hailing services GrabCar and Uber outside Parliament on Tuesday.  

The group of about 50 taxi drivers gathered 200m from the Parliament guardhouse at 9.30am, carrying placards and chanting slogans opposing GrabCar and Uber. 

They also submitted a memorandum to several Opposition MPs who arrived to meet them.  

Among them were PAS' Pokok Sena MP Datuk Mahfuz Omar and Bukit Gantang MP Idris Ahmad, as well as PKR’s Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli.  

The group claimed that the ride-hailing services were flouting the law and carrying out “illegal activities.”  

“Uber and GrabCar must be subjected to the same laws and regulations as taxi drivers. Only then can we accept them,” said group spokesman Zailani Sausudin, 54, who is chairman of the Klang Valley Taxi Drivers Action Group. 

“We are here today because we want our MPs, whom we have chosen through the ballot box, to meet us and ask us what is really happening on the ground. 

“Taxi drivers all over Malaysia are facing many difficulties right now. We cannot pay rent, we have no source of income and are unable to support our families or pay for our children's education.  

“What is happening?” he said, calling for the country's leaders to heed their grouses.  

Mahfuz said the Government must find a solution “once and for all” to assist taxi drivers, whom he claimed were being marginalised. 

He said there was nothing wrong with services like Uber and GrabCar, but added the legal procedures that taxi drivers have to abide by should also apply to ride-hailing and ride-sharing services.  

“There are already so many taxis out there, so if the Government wishes to allow Uber and GrabCar, then I think taxi services should be terminated and existing drivers should be allowed to use their own vehicles to ferry passengers,” he said.  

The six-page memorandum was addressed to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, Selangor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Nancy Shukri and several other prominent politicians.