FILE - Taxis line up waiting for customers at KL Sentral. Pix by Salhani Ibrahim

KUALA LUMPUR: Taxi drivers are advised to improve their services rather than wasting their time on the protests against Uber and GrabCar drivers.

"Taxi drivers must find ways to improve their services such as providing a comfortable ride, be friendly and use a fare meter. Taxi drivers must understand that it is they who opened up the opportunity for alternative ride services to rise because of their poor services to passengers," said Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) spokesman when contacted by the New Straits Times.

The spokesman added that taxi drivers who took their own course of actions over arresting Uber and GrabCar around KLCC several days ago were actually tarnishing their own image to the public.

"Not only their action is against the law, but they also have just created a negative perception to public with their gangster-like attitude.

"We don't encourage taxi drivers to take matters to their own hands as they don't have a legal right to do so. Each action taken must be according to the law and everyone must respect the law."

In regards to the action taken on GrabCar and Uber drivers by SPAD, the spokesman said, since October last year until last month, SPAD has seized 132 cars which were providing illegal chauffeur services. Of the number, 89 cars belong to the GrabCar drivers and 43 Uber drivers.

Drivers who get caught providing the illegal ride-sharing services will have their cars confiscated and fined up to RM10,000 and/or serving a year prison according to the law under section 16 of the Land Public Transport Act 2010.