261 illegal taxis being monitored
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE Land Transport Department (LTD) is currently monitoring the illegal taxi situation in the sultanate with 261 suspected operators now being profiled.
In a press conference yesterday, LTD said that the curbing of ‘taxi sapu’ or illegal taxis is to ensure public safety.
Photos of the 261 suspected vehicles and their drivers have also been recorded and kept as evidence.
According to Baha Hj Jamahar, head of Enforcement and Road Safety, LTD, some of the popular operating locations for illegal taxis include the Brunei International Airport, Muara Port, ferry terminal as well as bus stops with high human traffic such as in Gadong and Serusop.
Of the 261 suspected vehicles, 28 have been sent notices. The notices require the drivers to report to LTD for the purpose of being briefed. This is hoped to educate and deter these operators from committing the offence.
“We call them to find out who is the driver and to advise and warn them from committing the offence as a first warning. If they commit the offence again (after being briefed), we will inform and pass their details to the police,” said Baha.
From the 28 operators who have been issued with a notice, 13 have reported to LTD and admitted to the offence.
Baha said that operators who were sent notices but did not report to LTD will be blacklisted and suspended from renewing their driving licence.
He added that due to the constant monitoring and operations being conducted, a significant decrease has been observed in the number of illegal taxis around these areas especially at the Muara Port.
However, he said that no operations have been conducted in the other districts as of yet as LTD’s current focus is the Brunei-Muara district.
During the conference, LTD Director Dr Hj Supry Hj Ladi said that the popularity of illegal taxis arise due to the inefficiency of the Brunei public transport. To address this problem, a new taxi system and public transport project will be implemented.
Illegal taxi operators are liable to a penalty of six-month imprisonment and a fine of $10,000 under the Road Safety Act, Chapter 68, section 56, prohibition of use of unlicensed public service vehicles.
The Brunei Times