Will congestion charges be introduced on Federal Highway next, MCA asks Putrajaya

MCA president Wee Ka Siong says congestion charges and tolls are different terms meaning the same thing.

PETALING JAYA: In an apparent dig at the government over the proposed takeover of four highway concessions, MCA today asked if Putrajaya was planning to introduce congestion charges on the toll-free Federal Highway as well.

Its president Wee Ka Siong said if congestion charges were needed and good for the people, it was “illogical not to implement the same policy on the most congested highway” in Malaysia.

“Am I right? It is not impossible if congestion charge booths are built on other highways that are no longer charging toll,” he said in a statement.

Wee claimed that the government’s plan to replace toll with congestion charges was nothing but just a play of words.

“They are ashamed to admit that they are not able to fulfil the promises in their election manifesto to abolish all toll charges.

“Hence, they say the congestion charges are necessary and good for the people at large,” he said.

On statements by PH leaders that those opposing the introduction of congestion charges did not put the country and its people first, Wee said the coalition was just trying to cover up for its failure to abolish toll charges completely.

“They’re trying so hard to use this excuse to cover up their failure to fulfil the promise to abolish toll fees, which they kept harping on before the 14th general election, and was welcomed by their supporters.

Putrajaya had on Sunday announced that it was in talks with Gamuda Berhad to take over the concessions and introduce congestion charges on Lebuhraya Damansara Puchong (LDP), Sistem Penyuraian Trafik KL Barat (SPRINT), Lebuhraya Shah Alam (Kesas) and the SMART Tunnel.

The congestion charges are to be enforced for six hours during peak periods of travel every day.

Under the plan, toll charges will be maintained during peak hours, while a 30% discount is given during off-peak hours. The highways are toll-free between 11pm and 5am.