OUTRAGE: Drivers of prime-movers gather outside Northport for two hours over depot operators' 'bad service' and fees
KLANG: Over 1,000 disgruntled prime-mover drivers, unhappy with depot operators for allegedly charging exorbitant fees while causing delays to their operations, made sure their views were heard yesterday.
The group protested outside Northport beginning from 10am, demanding that the Transport Ministry and Port Klang Authority (PKA) resolve the matter.
Several demonstrators were also seen hurling stones and empty bottles at prime-movers that refused to stop throughout the two-hour protest.
The drivers claimed that they were acting on their own and were not associated with any group.
Shahrizal Jusari, 37, said they resorted to the protest after depot operators suddenly raised handling fees. "They used to charge RM5 and now it is between RM15 and RM20.
"We would not mind paying a standardised fee of RM20 if their services improved but their services have gotten from bad to worse."
He said while the drivers used to be able to make four trips a day to the depot in the past, this had been reduced to only one lately.
Following the protest, haulage operations in both North Port and West Port have been quite slow.
A Westports Malaysia Sdn Bhd spokesman confirmed that movement of prime-movers in and out of West Port has slowed down.
PKA chairman Datuk Teh Kim Poo, when contacted, said the problem was beyond the authority's jurisdiction.
He added that he would try to handle the issue in his other capacity as Klang Barisan Nasional chief, by speaking to depot operators and prime-mover drivers.