KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 (Bernama) -- To reduce accidents
involving commercial vehicles, it will soon be mandatory for drivers
of such vehicles to undergo training and retraining courses under
a Pembangunan Sumber Manusia Berhad (PSMB) programme.
For the time being however, Human Resources Minister
Datuk Seri Dr Fong Chan Onn said, the priority was for bus drivers
as they involved passengers.
"I understand that PSMB is working closely
with the Transport Ministry to ensure the training and retraining
of commercial drivers, particularly bus drivers, so that we can
reduce the rate of accidents," he told reporters Friday, after
opening Wisma PSMB, here.
Currently, there are about 700,000 commercial
drivers in the country, including lorry and truck drivers. Fong
said under the programme, all bus drivers must undergo the retraining
course every year, to improve their driving skill.
He said the companies could utilise the levy they
paid to PSMB, to pay for the retraining of their drivers.
"As the training and retraining are compulsory
for all commercial drivers, including those from small companies
who are not required to register with PSMB, the Cabinet has decided
to use the Transport Trust Fund to pay for these drivers.
"However, drivers are required to pay a nominal
fee of RM100," he added.
Under the PSMB Act, it is not compulsory for companies
with less than five workers to register with PSMB, while those
who registered must pay levy of one percent from the total monthly
salaries of their local workers.
The levy will be used by PSMB to provide training
and retraining programmes for skilled workers of these companies.
Besides transport companies, PSMB also requires
companies in the manufacturing sector to register with them.