TLDR; Najib’s brother says that RM67 is good money while driving around using AirAsia Ride for 4 hours
AirAsia recently launched a new ride hailing service, AirAsia Ride. According to Forbes, the ride-hailing service will initially be available in Kuala Lumpur and the broader Klang Valley area before rolling out to other parts of the country.
As part of their marketing efforts to promote their new app, AirAsia featured Datuk Nazir Razak, trying out driving for 4 hours. The video, uploaded onto their YouTube page, can be found here:
Who is Dato’ Nazir Razak?
He’s the brother of former Malaysian Prime Minister, Najib Razak. He is also the youngest son of the second Prime Minister of Malaysia, Abdul Razak Hussein. He’s most prominently known for being the former Chairman of Commerce International Merchant Bankers Berhad (CIMB) Bank, which he served until 2018.
What are Malaysians angry about?
Throughout the 4 hour stint, Dato’ Nazir picked up five passengers, including the executive chairman of the AirAsia group. He managed to earn RM67, approximately SGD 21. He also proceeded to comment that he could probably earn about RM 250 in a day, if he really “put his back into it”.
This has met with backlash from Malaysians, who as we know, have been going through a series of gruelling turmoil in the country as a result of the tumultuous government, and never-ending COVID-19 restrictions. The country has been subjected to increasing ICU cases and the rising unemployment crisis.
His brainless comments, paired against the many problems vulnerable and common Malaysians have to endure, scream privilege and ignorance.
Common folk don’t view this as a hobby, but as a means to put food on the table.
Various netizens have also taken their displeasure to Twitter,
RM16.75 an hour.
He says perhaps can get up to RM250 a day?
But it reflects city folks might not have the time, inclination or dosh for rides.
& gig economy isn’t as great as it sounds except for the unicorns.
Need paying jobs, not gags. https://t.co/NPs3TitRQz
— Jahabar Sadiq (@jsadiq) September 17, 2021
Dear @nazrazak , with all due respect, this is totally misleading. RM 67 for 4 hrs is nothing. Im glad you enjoyed the moment but to make it a full time job is utterly not viable. We already have more than 100K e-hailing drivers in Klang Valley…https://t.co/3hz5YhD16L
— 𝑾𝒂𝒏 𝑨𝒈𝒚𝒍 𝑾𝒂𝒏 𝑯𝒂𝒔𝒔𝒂𝒏 (@WanAgyl) September 17, 2021
This banker, worked over 4 hours and made RM67 as an e-hailing driver (without tips).
He thinks if he put his back to it, he’d make RM200-250 per day.
Do the math. Depreciation costs, fuel costs, et al. This is not a good banker. https://t.co/SgjAYgXlFu
— Colin Charles (@bytebot) September 17, 2021
Many have lamented that Dato Nazir’s “not a very good banker” since he can’t seem to grasp the fact that the money he earned is before the deduction of other costs, such as rental, fuel, maintenance, etc.
While we’re sure that Dato’ Nazir did not mean to be seen as ignorant with his comments, AirAsia’s marketing and publicity team could have done better to censor out such insensitive comments, especially during uncertain and bad times.
We applaud the concept, but the execution evidently backfired.
Nonetheless, we wish AirAsia Ride all the best in helping cover losses for the AirAsia airline arm. But.. we do think they owe Dato’ Nazir an apology.