PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian e-Hailing Drivers Association (Mehda) has called on all e-hailing operators to take stringent measures to ensure all passengers register using their identity cards to protect the safety of drivers following the robbery-cum-murder of a Grab driver in Sabah recently.
Mehda president Daryl Chong said this is the most fundamental thing that the industry should address and is necessary to prevent culprits involved in any such crimes from escaping.
“Anyone can register to be a Grab passanger just by obtaining a SIM card and subsequently using any name to be a passenger.
“It is also unfair that passengers get to know that the driver is genuine but the driver does not know whether the passenger is genuine or a potential robber.
“Passengers should be asked to register using a proper identification document, for instance, using their MyKad or passport,” he told FMT.
“The e-hailing operators must consider the driver’s safety if there is no proper registration. When the passengers are not being registered using their ID, the risks for the driver increases.
“I have personally used a few SIM cards just to test out the system and I can easily access all the e-riding apps.”
Sabah police had announced that they had arrested two men in connection with the robbery-cum-murder of Mohd Hanafiee Jaffar, 27, whose body was found dumped near bushes in Sabandar, Tuaran, near here.
Hanafiee’s car was found parked near a Ramadan bazaar in Indah Permai in Tuaran at 12.30am on May 26.
The car was locked but there were blood stains on the steering wheel, handbrake, the inside windscreen and the front door.
Chong said he had previously asked e-hailing operators to be more strict in ensuring all passengers are registered properly but, unfortunately, the e-hailing operators claimed this issue was “not relevant”, saying privacy issues were involved.
“These operators can always put in a clause that if a passenger wants to use the service, they must abide by the requirement to register properly. This will ensure every single passenger is a genuine person with good intentions.”
He said the operators may be afraid of losing customers who might be reluctant to use their services if personal particulars are required.
Chong also said there were many Grab drivers using multiple accounts and this could affect the security of the passengers.
“These are the things that should be looked into first.”
Grab Malaysia, in a statement, said it remained steadfast in its commitment to minimise the risks and ensure safety of both drivers and passengers alike.
“We continue to develop tech-driven solutions, and increase community awareness and education programmes.
“Currently, we have in place a variety of tools such as the emergency button and ‘share my ride’ feature where both parties are able to share trip details and live GPS locations with friends and loved ones.
“We also have the recently-launched ‘passenger selfie verification’.
“With the initial roll-out of the ‘passenger selfie verification’, passenger-initiated crimes on our platform have declined by 30%. This is a requirement for all new users.
“We expect to improve this further and expand this requirement to more users,” it said.
It said it would continue to work with the police to reduce criminal cases.