All eligible firms may present DRT proposals ahead of full launch, says Selangor exco man

PETALING JAYA: The Selangor government will invite all transport companies licensed by the Land Public Transport Agency (Apad) to offer the demand-responsive transit (DRT) service to present their proposals ahead of its full-scale operation.

A controversy brewed over the DRT service implementation recently as one of the two companies appointed by Selangor for the pilot project’s proof of concept (POC) test was helmed by Ramachandran Muniandy, the husband of Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh.

Selangor investment, trade and mobility committee chairman Ng Sze Han told the state assembly today that only two companies were licensed by Apad, namely Asia Mobility Technologies Sdn Bhd and Badanbas Coach Sdn Bhd, to operate DRT services at the time the state wanted to conduct the POC test.

Ramachandran is the Asia Mobility Technologies chief executive officer.

Ng said both companies were invited to make their presentations and both were selected to avoid any issue of perceived non-compliance with governance.

"The appointment of both companies was also to obtain comprehensive data on the DRT pilot project POC testing, which will be used as a guide in its operations.

"If the company selected did not have approval from Apad, (there would be) many legal implications for the state and the implementation may pose a safety hazard," he told Muhammad Hilman Idham's (PN-Gombak Setia), who asked for the basis for the two companies' appointment.

Ng said the appointments were agreed upon by the DRT Pilot Project Operations Committee and approved by Mentri Besar Incorporated's (MBI Selangor) board of directors, with the support of MBI's senior management investment committee.

"The POC test findings would identify the effectiveness of DRT service.

‘"If the DRT service is implemented fully, the findings will serve as a guide to ensure that it has a big impact," he said, adding that the POC test would end this month.

Asked why the state did not consider other transport providers such as ehailing companies or RapidKL, Ng said the DRT service was not an ehailing service as such but a was a mode of transportation "between buses and ehailing".

Questioned by Dr Afif Bahardin(PH-Taman Medan) about the funds disbursed for the project, Ng said the state had set aside RM2.16mil.

"Part of the payment has been disbursed and the remainder is due after completion of the (POC) project this month," he said.