A private-hire driver has come under fire for his racist rant against a passenger, over the issue of a child seat requirement for her child.
A video recording of the altercation was posted by TikTok user Rhiley36746 on Sunday (Sept 24), and reposted on Wakeupsingapore's Instagram account, with a caption stating that "this Tada driver was being racist to my aunty and younger cousin".
The passenger had booked the ride at around 2pm from her home in Pasir Ris Drive 6 on Saturday (Sept 23), reported The Straits Times.
The clip, which stretches for over a minute, begins as the ride is already in progress. The driver can be heard stating in broken English: "Your baby is less than 1.35m tall, I already give you a chance."
The passenger tries to explain that her daughter is nine years old and 1.37m in height, but the driver clapped back. "You don't argue with me, the metre is 1.35 only," he retorted, growing increasingly agitated.
When the passenger then remarked, "Ok, complain," the man countered: "Complain is good. Because you are very illegal."
"Illegal for what, uncle?" Asked the female passenger, to which the man appeared to indicate that she had asked him to "go the other way" in the wrong direction.
That's when the conversation went further south.
Continuing his tirade, the driver told the passenger "Don't haolian" (show-off in Hokkien), before hollering: "You are Indian.. I am Chinese, people know that you are Indian, I am Chinese, you are the very...worst customer."
Obviously taken aback by the sudden outburst, the passenger could be heard letting out an audible, "Wah."
'You trying to be funny with me': Driver
The passenger proceeds to inform the driver that she is Singaporean-Eurasian, but still the driver did not back down, stating: "No worry… I know you Indian. I'm Chinese, you try to be funny with me."
"Regardless, there are Singaporean-Indians by the way… You are racist," the passenger retorted.
"I'm just a driver only, nothing to do with you," said the man shortly before the clip ends.
A majority of commenters decried the actions of the driver and called for the man to be fired.
In addition, other commenters noted that it was unnecessary for the driver to shout, and that losing one's temper while driving also poses a hazard.
In a comment posted to Wakeupsingapore's video, Tada stated that they are currently investigating the case.
"We do not tolerate racism, discrimination, or abuse of any kind. Our team is investigating this issue. Thanks everyone who brought this to our attention."
When contacted, a Tada spokesperson told AsiaOne that it is aware of the recent incident involving a driver and passenger that has been shared on social media.
"We have initiated an internal investigation to fully understand the circumstances and will take all necessary actions based on our findings."
Tada added that their aim has always been to create a community built on mutual respect and understanding for both riders and drivers.
"We do not condone racial comments or remarks under any circumstances. We're committed to resolving this issue promptly and fairly to ensure that Tada remains a trusted platform for all," said the spokesperson.
AsiaOne has contacted Rhiley36746 for comment.
This is not the first altercation to have erupted between a Tada driver and passenger over the requirement for children below 1.35m to sit on a booster seat.
Earlier in June, another altercation had erupted between a Tada driver and a mother who did not wish to fork out an additional $2 for a booster seat for her child.
Responding to AsiaOne's queries then, a spokesperson from Tada had stated that they strongly advise passengers travelling with a child under 1.35 metres to request the use of a child seat via their app when booking a private hire car.
The Land Transport Authority had previously said that for safety reasons, "all vehicles in Singapore must have booster seats or child restraints for passengers under 1.35m in height".
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