Media Statement by Johore DAP Policy Director and Senai State Assemblyperson Wong Shu Qi on 5thAugust 2014 (Tuesday):
Latest toll hike and VEP hike affect 50% Johorean families while both BN and Singapore government should improve the mobility now before talking about charging people for using own vehicles crossing borders
People should not be punished for driving own vehicles if there is no feasible alternative of commuting provided by the government. It is irrational especially for BN government to increase toll charge at CIQ by about 480% except for motorcycles.
The policy eventually encourages people to take motorcycle and kill people, as the risk of being killed at road accident for motorcyclist is double or even higher than other vehicles.
Firstly, BN government should immediately look into the possibility of implementing KTM Komuter system with existing railway track. The existing railway track is estimated about 102km while there are only 5 stations Kulai, Kempas, JB Sentral, Pasir Gudang (cargo), Tg Kupang (cargo) allocated.
The 102km railway track connected most high-density residential area, for instances, Masai, Johor Jaya, Nusa Bestari, Skudai, Bukit Indah. Government should try to revive public transport service within Iskandar Malaysia by using existing infrastructure that has been long neglected.
Secondly, both governments should first try to improve the connectivity from the house to the workplace. Huge number of Malaysian migrant workers who work at Singapore industrial area that can hardly be accessed by public transport or need at least 2 or 3 transits in between choose to ride motorcycles to save the transit time.
Direct buses to the working place should be implemented to reduce number of motorcyclist and number of road fatalities.
Last but not least, I echo the suggestion by Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) chairman Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar, the causeway should be opened for people to walk into the republic again. Furthermore, both governments should consider installing walkalator along the 1.7km causeway.
According to a survey I have sighted, almost 50% of all Johorean families have relatives working in Singapore and 30% Johorean families have immediate family members commute daily to work.
I am not at liberty to disclose but I suggest that the state government to conduct a survey to understand clearly how the latest toll hike and coming border charge are going to hurt our own people.
Wong Shu Qi