by: Ravi Philemon/
In his blog entry Mr Tan requested the Transport Ministry to take urgent steps to revamp the public transport system by increasing capacity and by studying for implementation "the popular and successful system adopted in Hong Kong, where small light buses are used to ferry commuters between the homes and the bus and train stations".
Mr Tan wrote that "many Singaporeans have expressed their unhappiness" with the public transportation as it is, through various channels. He said that he is echoing the views of the public, "that the public transport operators are already making big profits for their shareholders, paying high salaries for their chief executives (as reported in their annual reports) and are operating in an near monopolistic situation with little competition in their respective market segments", and the complains "crowded buses and trains, unreliable service, poor level of customer service (due to insufficient or poorly trained workers) and excessive fare deduction (due to system fault)".
In view of these feedback from the public, Mr Tan asked "the Public Transport Council to delay any fare increase until the public transport operators can provide more capacity and improve the standard of service, namely to provide a more comfortable ride with shorter waiting and travelling time."
Mr Tan Kin Lian also asked the Council to consider "more concessions be given to senior citizens, low income families and students to offset" any fare increases.
Mr Tan said in his blog that he "recognise the duty of the public transport operators to provide a return on investment to shareholders", but asked them "to consider their responsibility to the public and keep the fares at a reasonable level" by reducing their operating costs.
Read Mr Tan Kin Lian's blog entry HERE.