MRT Inquiry: 1 more question please?

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The MRT Inquiry should include one more question?

I refer to Christopher Tan’ article “How deep is the SMRT rot? 4 questions about the rail company that an inquiry could answer” (Sunday Times, Nov 5)

Whilst we are at it – may I suggest including a fifth question.

Because it may address what is the perhaps the root cause of our MRT problems – what my friends call “you don’t care – why should I?” culture.

Allow me to explain.

You see – when we finally get what I believe to be the largest reduction in public transport fares from the fare review formula (most of the time in the past it was “fare increases”, not “fare decrease”) – what do we do?

We roll-over (which I believe means defer lah) -3.2 of the -5.4 fare reduction to next year’s fare review exercise.

“As to “The discounted fares before the morning peak period will amount to a fare adjustment quantum of -2.2 per cent. The balance -3.2 per cent quantum, which was allowable under this year’s fare formula, will be rolled over to the 2018 Fare Review Exercise” – does it mean that the -3.2 reduction would have resulted in a reduction in fares for practically everybody?

If this is the case – why are we deferring it to next year’s fare review exercise?

Is it fair to do this to commuters?

With regard to “The lower pre-peak fares will translate to a combined reduction of about $40.1 million a year in fare revenue for public transport operators” – will the net effect of the deferral of the “-3.2 per cent” mean that the transport operators may actually be making more or less money – relative to the commuters in totality?

So, if we arguably, seemingly, appear to “not care” for the people – what do you expect the people who work with our MRT to do?

Maybe – since “you don’t care – I also don’t care lah”!

Leong Sze Hian

About the Author

Leong
Leong Sze Hian has served as president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), invited to speak more than 200 times in over 30 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of Indonesia and Brunei. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.