While the public transport system of a country is its backbone and an efficient and reliable system needs to be in place to ensure progress, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin says it’s more than just that of having a good physical infrastructure in place, The Star reports.

“It is about planning and management, and it is about being clean, efficient, reliable and on time,” he said. Khairy stated that with an urbanisation rate of 60%, a proper public transport system is both a necessity and a government priority. He added that Malaysians should be looking less at the automobile as a means of daily transportation.

“We need to reduce our dependence on private cars, because that chokes our cities, increases carbon footprint and household debt levels, not to mention the stress of being stuck in jams,” he said.

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He was speaking to reporters at a MoU signing between the Youth and Sports ministry and Prasarana Malaysia, which kicked off the inaugural Bootcamp Bus Captain programme. The programme is set to train youths and those from lower income households to become Rapid bus captains.

Under the free programme, trainees are set to receive an allowance of RM900 a month, and those who successfully complete the three-month long programme will be offered bus captain positions with Prasarana, which is looking to fill up to 1,000 vacancies for such positions in the long term.