(Petaling Jaya, Saturday): Malaysians are concerned as to what the Anti-Corruption Agency (ACA) meant when it spoke of a nationwide operation to locate the 100,000 holders of illegally-obtained driving licences.
I have already said that the launching of such a campaign on Monday is a breach of ACA undertaking of a 30-day grace period until Sept. 26 for the surrender of the fake licences and any such operation should only begin after Sept. 26.
The Road Transport Department (RTD) has offered to help the ACA in such a nation-wide operation to locate the 100,000 holders of illegally-obtained driving licences
Has’nt the RTD more urgent and important things to do to clean up corruption in the department and restore public confidence in its efficiency and integrity, with some RTD offices in Perak in a state of paralysis, than to go round with ACA hunting the fake licence holders?
ACA must clarify what it meant by a nation-wide campaign, as there are fears of abuses of power and harassment of the innocent and the ACA must be forewarned in particular against conducting house-to-house searches which could lead to public confrontation between the ACA and the innocent public.
Furthermore, the ACA must not be seen to be losing sight of its proper priorities in combatting "big-time" corruption, as up to now, the ACA has failed to bring in any "sharks" but only "ikan bilis".
I call on holders of illegally-obtained driving licences to surrender their fake documents but the ACA and RTD should work out a scheme aimed at maximising public convenience where those who come forward to surrender their fake licences would be able to undergo proper driving tests within a week and to be issued with proper driving licences if found qualified and competent drivers. This is important as a driving licence is an essential part of one’s livelihood.
In fact, the ACA and RTD should seriously consider extending the 30-day
grace period to two months so that such a crash programme could be put
in place, and I would urge the Transport Minister, Datuk Dr. Ling Liong
Sik to table this matter in next week’s Cabinet.