Better road safety awareness needed to avoid another ‘basikal lajak’ tragedy, says Dr Wee

ISKANDAR PUTERI: There is a need to raise more awareness among the public, including parents on road safety to avoid another “basikal lajak” tragedy, says Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong (pic).

The Transport Minister said that all parties, including the police and other enforcement agencies, also have to work together to raise awareness and enhance road safety.

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“I seek the cooperation of those carrying out enforcement, including the police to enhance their monitoring and use the Road Transport Act that has been amended well.

“This goes for all kinds of offences, including those driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, dangerous driving and even ‘basikal lajak’ activities.

“We need to educate them so that they would not fall into such activities that could lead to another tragedy,” he said on Saturday (April 16) after having a buka puasa event with Johor media practitioners here in Forest City.

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He was responding to questions on the 2017 ‘basikal lajak’ tragedy, which took the lives of eight teenagers and caused a 27-year-old clerk to be sentenced to six years imprisonment.

Dr Wee added that as the Transport Minister, he respects the judicial system and would not interfere with it.

“We have amended the Road Transport Act to increase penalties for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs as well as for ‘mat lajak’ and ‘mat rempit’ activities in 2020.

“In this context, as the executive, we have amended the law and it comes into force starting from the date it was gazetted.

“I believe in the judicial system and for me, it is not right for the executive (branch) to teach the judiciary,” he said.

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On Wednesday (April 13), the Johor Baru High Court sentenced Sam Ke Ting to six years in prison and fined her RM6,000 over the fatal accident in Jalan Lingkaran Dalam here at 3.20am on Feb 18, 2017.

On a separate matter, Dr Wee also said that the Transport Ministry was looking into ways to ensure that those travelling between Peninsula Malaysia and Sabah and Sarawak could have cheaper flight tickets.

“On Wednesday (April 13), I told the Malaysia Aviation Commission (Mavcom), the Malaysia Civil Aviation Authority (CAAM) and three domestic aviation companies to have a meeting to discuss the issue.

“They have been meeting for three days to find ways to ensure the public can have better flights rate.

“Once the meeting has been concluded, I will report the results to the Prime Minister for further action,” he said.

He said that the government was looking at the matter seriously, especially in conjunction with the festive season when many were looking to meet their families back home.