KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah state government today launched its first electric bus under a six-month pilot project to provide better public transport services to the people.
Qhazanah Sabah Berhad (QSB) executive director Mohd Shukor Abdul Mumin said Sabahans could ride the electric bus plying the Sepanggar-Menara Kinabalu-city centre route for free throughout the period.
QSB is the Sabah state government’s strategic investment arm.
“Apart from providing eco-friendly travel, e-BusKK with a capacity of up to 54 passengers provides easier access for the elderly and persons with disabilities on wheelchairs as it is equipped with a ramp.
“It is also installed with CCTV cameras for passenger safety, global positioning system (GPS) and driver monitoring system,“ he told reporters after the flagging-off ceremony by Sabah Community Development and People’s Wellbeing Minister Datuk Shahelmey Yahya.
Mohd Shukor said the pilot project was implemented to assess the sustainability and feasibility of electric buses in an effort to support the existing public transportation system in the state.
“For now, we will run only one bus...we will get feedback from passengers on the bus service,” he said adding that the introduction of e-BusKK was part of the initiative to reduce carbon emissions in Kota Kinabalu by 2050.
“To achieve the target of becoming a carbon-neutral country by 2050, everyone needs to be involved. Our hope is that the electric bus service will be expanded to other districts in Sabah,” he said.
Following the pilot project, the electric bus service is expected to start operating next year with between five and 20 buses, he added.
He said the project was a collaboration between QSB and Gemilang Coachwork Sdn Bhd, one of Asia’s leading manufacturers of electric buses and aluminium bus bodies.-Bernama