KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 11 — It is estimated that more than 65,660 Bumiputera individuals have ventured into the p-hailing (food delivery) service industry, mostly during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the Bumiputera Agenda Steering Unit (Teraju) survey findings.

The survey found that the number of Bumiputera food delivery riders — most of whom are young, Muslim and single Malays, Bumiputera of Sabah and Sarawak as well as Orang Asli — made up 93.8 per cent of the total 70,000 food delivery riders in Malaysia.

The survey involving 503 respondents in the Klang Valley also found that 51.7 per cent of them ventured into the sector during the first movement control order (MCO), 20.5 per cent during the MCO 2.0 and 18.5 per cent during MCO 3.0.

However, 77 per cent of the respondents only ventured into the p-hailing to earn a side income, while 23 per cent treated it as their main source of income, the majority of whom were self-employed, students and private employees.

The Survey on Job Opportunities in P-Hailing (Food Delivery) Service Industry Among the Bumiputera During Covid-19 Pandemic was conducted by Teraju between April 26 and May 21.

The respondents agreed that time was the main factor that lured them to venture into food delivery service, followed by other factors namely income, survival, economy and qualifications.

The survey also found that 72 per cent of them were school leavers, 27 per cent were degree holders and one per cent was postgraduate degree holders.

Over 70 per cent of the respondents admitted to having been involved and injured in accidents, but less than half of them were covered by personal insurance.

What’s worse is that 86.4 per cent of the respondents said that they get no help from the p-hailing companies if they were involved and or injured in any kind of accident.

The respondents strongly agreed that contributions such as to the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) and Social Security Organisation (Socso), as well as insurance coverage, medical card, sick leave and death benefits, should be provided by the companies.

Meanwhile, Teraju had held a two-day focused group online discussions on July 29 and 30 involving 43 stakeholders including the Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs, Royal Malaysia Police, EPF, Socso, Road Transport Department, Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (Miros) and p-hailing companies. 

Through the discussions, various recommendations for improvement were presented, covering aspects of p-hailing companies, legislation, application system, vendors and customers, as well as safety.

Among the recommendations are establishing a system of evaluation, certification and accreditation for the p-hailing platforms; formulating a road safety law for p-hailing riders; and creating a transparent application display system for customers to see the real-time status of their orders.

Other suggestions include improving the calculation of distance and time allocation, creating a rating system for all industry players to improve application efficiency, providing guidelines and safety training for p-hailing riders, and issuing halal certification.

By implementing all the recommendations, it is hoped that the wellbeing and safety of p-haling riders will be ensured and better protected. — Bernama