KUALA LUMPUR: The bus drivers association had agreed to extend their full support to the government for daily urine tests to be done on drivers although they do not agree with the decision.
Peninsular Malaysia Bus Driver Association president Saa'dan Man said this is because the daily tests would interfere with bus trips and scheduling as the tests are time consuming.
He added the move will also tarnish the image of bus drivers and the country as the tests would be carried out in bus terminals where there are tourists from all over the world.
He said it would be more appropriate to carry out the tests in the bus operators offices rather than having them at bus terminals or on the road.
Saa’dan was commenting on a statement by deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Aziz Kaprawi on Tuesday, that in light of the recent bus accidents in the country, all bus drivers will have to undergo urine tests at all bus terminals every day.
“Based on my experience, bus accidents occur not only because of drugs or the driver’s negligence as other factors like bus maintenance and unconducive road conditions which are not suitable for heavy load transportation like double-decker buses,” Saa’dan told Astro AWANI.
He said the right approach to stop bus accidents would be to look into the welfare of the bus drivers, physical conditions and maintenance of roads in the country.
"Not all bus drivers in Malaysia are drug addicts and it is not fair for all bus drivers to be labelled as that" he said adding that bus drivers in Malaysia are constantly demotivated and always tired due to long hours trips, without breaks and a small salary.
He also called on the government to closely monitor bus companies or operators and ensure that the drivers’ salary commensurate with the services they provide.
Abdul Aziz said the operation of a drug screening test involving about 8,600 drivers will be jointly implemented by the Road Transport Department and the National Drug Agency on a daily basis.
Driving license would be revoked immediately if the driver fails the urine test.