GEORGE TOWN - Many former parking attendants are now jobless after the Penang Island Municipal Council implemented the coupon parking system yesterday.
Some of them claimed that the council had been unfair to them because it had not provided them with alternative jobs, while others said they were uncertain of the promises of employment made by the company which had taken over the parking collection system from the local authority.
Mohamed Fairuz Mohidin Meetin, 36, said he was still waiting for a call from Perkhidmatan Alam Indah Sdn Bhd.
He claimed that the company had informed him and a few others that there could be alternative jobs for them.
"We were informed that we could be hired by the company after it had taken over the parking charges collection from the council.
"It has been a few days now and still there is no word from the company," said Fairuz who has been a parking attendant for 15 years.
The father of two said he earned about RM40 daily collecting parking fees in Persiaran Gurney.
He said he was looking for odd jobs to help supplement his wife's income as a dish washer at a restaurant to support their children who are aged 7 and 10.
"Many of my friends and I were counting on the company to offer us alternative jobs but now I don't know whether this will ever happen. I think we have been misled by the company," he said.
Thum Shu Saan, 77, who had been working as a parking attendant since he was 39, said he was offered a job as a coffee-shop waiter but had to turned it down because it involved longer working hours.
"Previously I could earn up to RM50 a day working from 9am to 5pm. I am too old to work longer hours at a coffee shop," he said.
Another former parking attendant K. Segaran, 54, said he was trying very hard to get another job. His wife is an odd job worker.
"I am not giving up hope but it will be hard to find another job which can provide me with an income of about RM1,000 a month, especially at my age," he said.
An officer at Perkhidmatan Alam Indah Sdn Bhd said the company would help the former parking attendants to find jobs, including with other companies.
However, the officer, who declined to be named, said it would depend on job availability and their experience and qualifications.