Did you know that road tax don't go into road maintenance funds?
Jerrica · Jan 6, 2021 06:46 PM
If you are surprised to find out that the road tax we pay every year doesn’t contribute to paying for road repairs then safe to say you’re not alone. The fact came to light after the much-talked-about pothole accident that Minister Khairy Jamaluddin (KJ) got into just weeks ago.
According to a study, 80 percent of pothole accidents happen on roads that don’t require road users to pay tolls. Malaysia has also been rated the country with the third-highest road crash deaths in ASEAN.
Responding to an article posted by The Star, Professor Ahmad Farhan Mohd Sadullah, Professor in Transport, School of Civil Engineering, University of Science Malaysia (USM), revealed that the road tax that we pay yearly goes to the Road Transport Department, but not road maintenance.
In an interview with Yamin Vong, former editor of New Straits Times' Cars, Bikes and Trucks, he said: “The road taxes that the Road Transport Department collects funds many purposes including public transport projects like Prasarana’s MRT, LRT and Rapid Buses, and not specifically on road maintenance."
This would mean that no money is channelled into fixing the road conditions, heavily neglecting the roads that don’t require a fee to traverse.
Farhan calls for a change in this system saying: “We look at the ground. Sometimes the authorities’ hands are tied. We should look beyond. After some many years in road safety (Farhan was formerly the Director-General of MIROS from 2008-2011), I feel that the policy of financing road maintenance is the major issue.
“Road tax should be used to partially finance the costs of road repairs on non-toll roads"
Besides his teaching position, Prof. Farhan is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of USM.
There isn’t a time in memory that doesn’t involve staring at cars. After discovering the excitement of watching Schumacher vs Hakkinen, Formula 1 became a major part of life. The love for cars and F1 ultimately led to a job with CAR Magazine. The untimely death of the magazine meant a hiatus from cars at lifestyle women’s magazine Marie Claire before another opportunity came knocking again.