Should Sinkies pay for the impending bus fare hike?
The almost instantaneous reaction by most Sinkies is no, they should not be paying for the pay hikes of the bus drivers. The robotic type will auto reply, if got improve in service quality ok lor. With so many pay hikes in the past, if every pay hike led to a little improvement in service quality, the services would have been perfect by now. Though the pay hike will in a way challenge the principles of cheap, better and fast workers, it seems that right from the top, from the ministers to the masses, there is a consensus and good justification for this pay hike. At least the ministers are saying so or suggesting so.
And the money must come from somewhere, or from someone. Who dunno? From the directors and top management? How could anyone be so audacious to think of this? It would affect their lifestyle and they may be less motivated to work for the bus companies and the service quality will be badly affected. There is still the spectre of corruption lurking in the shadow when they are not paid well. Do you really want this? From the shareholders? How can? The shareholders’ interests must be taken care of as they are shareholders of the company. They took risk of losing their money even in a monopoly business, big big risky. Don’t always expect the Govt to pump in $1b to the rescue.
If not the shareholders or directors or top management, then who? Cheng hu? The Cheng hu already promised to give $1.1b so how to ask for more? Cheng hu where got so much money? Reserves cannot touch.
I think the best source of fund for the pay hike of drivers must still come from the commuters. Some will willingly accept the increase if the bus operators can promise to improve the service quality. As for those who are not willing to foot the bill, one suggestion is to give them a $50 top up to sweeten and soften their resistance. After using up the $50, they will not feel the difference in the new fares, or even forgotten about the higher fares. They would get use to the new fares.
And for the stubborn ones, just tell them that the hike will not cost more than a plate of char kway teow a month. It will only amount to a few cents. They will not feel anything at all. A plate of kway teow a month would not cause them to tighten the belt. The commuters must get use to paying for quality service, for quality management and directors, and the interests of the shareholders. Nothing comes free. There is no free lunch. If they don’t pay, then they must be prepared for lower standard of public transportation.