PETALING JAYA: Thanks to dashboard cameras (dash cams) and mobile phone recordings, the shenanigans of some badly behaved Malaysians and their bizarre behaviour sometimes end up on social media for all to see.
A video that was recently uploaded on TikTok infuriated netizens, and is being widely shared on social media. In it, a man is seen standing in front of a vacant car parking space at the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre.
A woman motorist who wanted to park there could not do so as the man refused to budge.
She could be heard asking, “Seriously bro? Where is your car?” and “I know you want to go to Matta Fair. Everyone wants to go there too” among other comments, before leaving, presumably to find another parking space.
In the video caption, the TikTok user also said: “It’s 2023 and we still have car park ‘squatters’.”
Parking space squatting is one habit that annoys many motorists who arrive at a vacant parking spot only to discover that someone is standing there to “reserve” the space for their friend or family member.
theSun checked with several malls on what action they could take against parking space squatters and other such issues.
A spokesman for the management of Quill City Mall said: “It is the mall management’s responsibility to oversee the car park. We monitor it through our CCTV cameras and will instruct our security guards to take immediate action if there is an issue.”
A Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall spokesman said it rarely faces such issues and the majority of shoppers who visit the mall follow the rules of its car park.
“If there are such cases, our car park team on patrol and our auxiliary police personnel will immediately act on the matter.”
Lawyer Joshua Wu Kai-Ming said the management of a shopping mall or private car park does not have a legal obligation to prevent individuals from squatting at car parking spaces if they wished to do so.
He said it is nevertheless a criminal offence to squat at parking spaces and the mall security should inform the police if such matters arise. The public can refer to Section 50(3) and Section 119 of the Road Transport Act 1987.
“Section 50(3) states that any person, other than with lawful authority, who remains on any road or at any parking place for the purpose of importuning any other person in respect of watching or cleaning of a motor vehicle, or for the purpose of directing any driver of a motor vehicle in respect of parking on such road or at such place, he shall be guilty of an offence under the Road Transport Act 1987,” he said.
Wu also said car park operators managing shopping malls or private car parks can direct their security guards or car park personnel to patrol the premises.
“However, the operators are not legally required to do so.”
Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre general manager of business development Winnee Lim said: “I am not sure where the car park squatting incident happened, but during the Matta Fair from March 17 to 19, the centre hosted some 75,000 visitors daily.
“Trained marshals and partnerships with local authorities and Rela helped manage traffic, while we encouraged the public to carpool and use public transport to reduce traffic.
“We even provided shuttle buses and multiple parking options for safe and stress-free travel.”