Dead Editors

I refer to Christopher Tan’ article “How deep is the SMRT rot? 4 questions about the rail company that an inquiry could answer” (Sunday Times, Nov 5). Whilst we are at it – may I suggest including a fifth question. Because it may address what is the perhaps the root cause of our MRT problems – what my friends call “you don’t care – why should I?” culture.

Allow me to explain.

You see – when we finally get what I believe to be the largest reduction in public transport fares from the fare review formula (most of the time in the past it was “fare increases”, not “fare decrease”) – what do we do? We roll-over (which I believe means defer lah) -3.2 of the -5.4 fare reduction to next year’s fare review exercise.

“As to “The discounted fares before the morning peak period will amount to a fare adjustment quantum of -2.2 per cent. The balance -3.2 per cent quantum, which was allowable under this year’s fare formula, will be rolled over to the 2018 Fare Review Exercise” – does it mean that the -3.2 reduction would have resulted in a reduction in fares for practically everybody?

If this is the case – why are we deferring it to next year’s fare review exercise? Is it fair to do this to commuters?

With regard to “The lower pre-peak fares will translate to a combined reduction of about $40.1 million a year in fare revenue for public transport operators” – will the net effect of the deferral of the “-3.2 per cent” mean that the transport operators may actually be making more or less money – relative to the commuters in totality?

So, if we arguably, seemingly, appear to “not care” for the people – what do you expect the people who work with our MRT to do? Maybe – since “you don’t care – I also don’t care lah”!

Leong Sze Hian

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