This post comes from a place of extreme frustration and emotional exhaustion. It takes this and a combination of other factors to make a man into an activist. Let me tell you a story of bureaucracy, and how it came to waste my time today, as I attempted to do the most mundane of tasks: renewing my driving license.
A week ago, I came to a realization that I had misplaced my driving license extension slip. This is the extra piece of laminated paper that states the validity period of your license, and must be presented together with your old photo license. So I searched and searched to no avail. In my mind, it was gone, and I needed to renew my license. The next thing I did was to see if there was any way to find out when my license would expire.
Lo and behold, a quick Google search gave me the result I needed, there’s an online portal on JPJ where you can simply key in your IC number and find out about your driving license. Turns out it would be expiring next week. So I thought to myself, why not just go renew it and get a new license. Sounds simple right? Turns out you can get your license renewed at POS Malaysia outlets. That’s great news, because going to JPJ offices can be suicide at times.
And so I went, getting my number, and waiting a good 30 minutes before my turn was up. Getting to the counter, I was informed by the lady at the counter that she needed my license extension slip. I was horrified, and told her it was lost. She said apologetically that I had to go to JPJ then. I was so numb at that point. Why is it that when you can simply check this information online, that you need to see the physical item? It’s not like you’re going to keep my old license anyway.
To be fair, my fault was not reading the little standing brochure on the desk where the number machine was. But I just can’t understand why in this age where it seems the government doesn’t even care to safeguard the security of our information, that these entities that provide services for us can’t just loop into these systems and get the necessary information? It’s not like she wasn’t holding my IC, which would have been the key to all the information she would have needed?
I did the only thing I could do, which was to walk away fuming. I raged in the car, and as I got home, that rage turned into hopelessness, as POS Malaysia was my last hope against going to the dreadful JPJ office.
I guess I’m going to have to ransack my house again, in the hopes that I’ll be able to find this wayward driving slip of mine.