Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook has told his ministry’s event organisers to start events on time and to not wait for him. “I was told that I was to be here at 9.50am and I arrived five minutes earlier. “However, I noticed the stage backdrop shows that the event starts at 9am. “I want to advise those inviting me for events that there will be no more ‘waiting time’ for the minister,” he said when launching the Yamaha 20th Raya Balik Kampung Roads Safety Campaign here Friday.
Loke said that he would have made it on time if invited, as he did not like people to waste their time waiting for him. “If you invite me at 8.30am, I will be there on time. “There should be no more waiting time for the minister,” he said, adding that punctuality was a value that Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad practised. On May 22, Loke, when starting his ministerial duties in Putrajaya, issued instructions against his staff welcoming or accompanying him at ministry events. He said that the protocol was a waste of time, which could be put to better use by staff members. Meanwhile, in conjunction with the Aidilfitri celebration next week, Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Transport Minister Anthony Loke gave a special reminder to road users returning to their hometowns.
In a short video released by the Road Safety Department, Mahathir advised road users to stop for a nap should they feel sleepy when driving. The 92-year-old politician, who has a passion for driving, also advised elderly drivers like him to refrain from driving for fear they lack the energy to do so. “People in their 90s should not be driving…Driving gives me great pleasure but I can only drive during weekends, even then there is a ‘driver’ beside me,” he said in the video uploaded on Youtube today. At the same time, he said road users with outstanding traffic summonses should settle them. On the government giving a discount for the summonses this festive season, Dr Mahathir said with discounts it would not serve as a lesson. The Prime Minister also took the opportunity to wish Selamat Hari Raya to all road users and their families.
Meanwhile, Loke, who appeared in the same video, said it was not the government’s intention to issue summonses or cause inconvenience to road users but the move was to remind road users to be more cautious on the roads. “Recently for example, I issued a reminder to car owners to replace faulty airbags if their cars are in the list of recalled vehicles. They must have them replaced. If they fail to do so, we have to summon them,” he said. Last Tuesday, Loke revealed that 358,233 vehicles comprising Toyota, Nissan, Honda, BMW, Mitsubishi, Subaru, Mazda and Lexus brands were still fitted with defective Takata airbags. On whether the Pakatan Harapan government would implement new road regulations, Loke said they were looking into the matter. He also advised motorists and passengers to be patient and exercise caution while on the road.
“For me, the important thing to remember when driving back to our hometown is that we we are going back to have an enjoyable time with our family. “When feeling sleepy, listen to some music or do something to stay awake … Selamat Hari Raya and stay safe on the road,” he added.