Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan has spoken out for the first time since his ministry announced the surprise personal mobility device (PMD) ban from public footpaths on Monday.
In a Facebook post on Friday evening (Nov. 8), the minister outlined the latest developments in a whirlwind week that saw unprecedented gatherings of disgruntled and worried PMD-using food delivery riders at various MPs' Meet-the-People Sessions since the ban took effect on Tuesday (Nov. 5).
He said that while Singaporeans were mostly in favour of the ban, he also knew the impact that it would have on food delivery riders in particular.
"As soon as the decision was taken, we had been in consultation with the food delivery companies: GrabFood, Deliveroo and Foodpanda. The prohibition would impact their riders and as responsible employers, they were keen to help them transit, either to alternative modes of mobility or to other jobs. We share the same objective as the companies."
Khaw added that the new grant, announced by Senior Minister of State for Transport Lam Pin Min on Friday evening, was welcomed by the three food delivery companies, which he says are now working on bulk-purchase arrangements of road-approved mobility devices like e-bikes, power-assisted bicycles and regular bicycles to lower costs.
He also mentioned that apart from career switch assistance provided by NTUC and Workforce Singapore, he knows of MPs who are on standby to assist those in temporary financial difficulty as a result of the footpath ban, through ComCare.
He concluded his post saying:
"We are returning footpath safety to pre-PMD days. This episode is a reminder to all that we must always be considerate and gracious to others. Always be alert and also be on the lookout for the more vulnerable members of the public when we move around our neighbourhood. Let’s go for zero accidents and zero casualty in Singapore: whether roads or public paths."
Read his post in full here:
More on the PMD footpath ban:
Top photo via Khaw Boon Wan's Facebook page