When approached for assistance by desperate taxi drivers who saw their income fell 90% after the airport closure, Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan told them to apply to be bus drivers:
“Taxi drivers affected by the coronavirus crisis can drive buses or be deployed to lessen crowding on trains.”
The millionaire PAP minister who is retiring after this election said taxi drivers can also apply to be contract cleaners:
“These are temporary positions to support higher manpower needs at our stations during this special period. They can also help to sanitise train cabins, seats, poles more frequently. They could be employed on three or six-month contracts, depending on how long the pandemic lasts. Cabbies who have seen their earnings hit by the Covid-19 pandemic can fill these roles. The extra cash allowance may also come in handy… to supplement their reduced income.”
More than 30,000 taxi drivers have given up their license in the past three months, after reporting single digit daily earnings. There is no financial assistance for taxi drivers in Singapore, as they continue to pay car rental up to S$130 a day.