Yet another incident has occurred involving a rider and driver of an e-hailing service here in Malaysia but this time it’s not Uber. Grab has now come under pressure as a woman was allegedly raped by her GrabCar driver while on her way home.
According to TheStar’s report, Serdang OCPD Asst Comm Megat Mohamad Aminudin Megat Alias said that the 29-year-old woman was allegedly raped near her home in Bandar Putra Permai in Seri Kembangan on Sunday. The incident occurred at around 4am while the driver was sending her home.
ACP Megat Mohamad Aminudin said that the woman claims that the driver had sexually assaulted her but she could not fight him off because she was drunk. The Grab driver later drove her home.
Following the woman’s report, police have picked up the 30-year-old suspect at his home in Sungai Buloh at 10pm the same day. They also seized his car and the clothes that he wore during the alleged incident for analysis.
According to the police, the driver had been driving with Grab for less than three months and had no criminal records. The man has been remanded for six days and the case is being investigated under Section 376 of the Penal Code.
Grab country head of Malaysia, Sean Goh, has since published a public statement on the company’s Facebook page. He expresses regret for what has happened and states that Grab’s priority is now to provide support to the passenger and her family as well as assist the police in their investigation.
He also says that the company has a zero tolerance policy to any crime conducted by their drivers and have since removed the driver involved in this case from their platform pending investigations. According to Sean, Grab conducts rigorous face-to-face driver screening and criminal background checks and — in light of this event — will keep investing in driver screenings, training, and other safety initiatives.
Grab will also expedite their development of extending the “PDRM Panic Button” feature (currently available in their Driver’s app) to the passenger app as well. You can find his full statement here:
With the number of incidents that have occurred surrounding ride-sharing services, it becomes paramount that companies like Grab and Uber take a hard look at the safety and security of their service. It is also important for us, the riders, to take more precautions like sharing your trips with your loved ones, making sure the driver and vehicle match your booking, or being more alert when entering a vehicle and during the ride.