Have Your Say: S$7k cab driver

Just how much can a taxi driver in Singapore make in a month?

Mr Muhammad Hasnor Hashim, the cabby who quickly came under fire after reportedly telling The Sunday Times a weekend ago that he earns $7000 a month driving his “money machine”, has now become the target of online attacks and irked colleagues who deemed his feat nearly impossible. The 32-year-old father of three left the taxi company as a result.

But Hasnor is now claiming that he has been misunderstood – the amount was made in a record month in May and not what he earns on average.

The local paper then ran a story on Sunday saying that the cabby “has changed his account” after first telling them more than once that he earned $7,000 a month.

Cabby’s story

Hasnor took to his own Facebook page last Friday to defend himself.

He wrote that he only agreed to do the interview as he thought it was a feature on young taxi drivers and did not expect his words to be taken out of context.

Explaining that the S$7000 he earned was a “one time hit in May… which I explain(ed) to them”, Hasnor added, “I did not say I earn 7k every month.”

“When I call up the reporter, she just said nevermind let it be it will go off but I’m disappointed with the title of the story,” he wrote. “It’s supposed to be (about a) young taxi driver, not my face with 7k.”

Hasnor had also told other media late last week that the “one-off” $7000 was hard-earned – it was only made after driving over 12 hours a day which “wasn’t worth it”.

Journalist’s story

The journalist, who has also been flamed online for being “untruthful”, claimed otherwise.

According to The Straits Times’s transport correspondent Maria Almenoar’s report following the uproar, her interviewee had mentioned more than once, with no signs of exaggeration, that he earned $7000 a month.

She said she had asked him how much he earned and not for the most he ever earned.

Hasnor also reportedly told the paper last Wednesday that he was saddened by skeptics’ negative reaction and even offered to teach fellow cabbies who were interested to learn “tips” from him.

The journalist added that he only started offering other media a different story at the end of last week.

Since news of Hasnor’s incredible feat broke two Sundays ago, supporters and critics alike – of both the cabby and the writer –have been making their voices heard on the social media space.

Most recently, a screengrab of an e-mail from Almenoar to the cabby (seen on Hardwarezone’s forum page), believed to be provided by Hasnor himself and dated 30 Oct, advising him that “lying low may be a good idea for now” has also gone viral on Facebook.

More versions of the story also surfaced as netizens – some who claimed to be friends of the parties involved – chipped in, fuelling speculations and sparking more debate.

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