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Cabby backtracks on $7,000-a-month earnings claim

Despite earlier saying a few times he made $7k a month, he now says it was just for May

Published on Nov 4, 2012 6:00 AM
Mr Muhammad no longer drives a Premier taxi, saying that other cabbies were unhappy after he was featured in The Sunday Times last week. -- ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

Taxi driver Muhammad Hasnor Hashim has changed his account of life as a taxi driver a week after making the news for claiming to earn $7,000 a month.

The 32-year-old had told two journalists of The Sunday Times that he earned that sum by working hard and working smart driving a Premier taxi. On Saturday, he said he made $7,000 only once, in May this year, and that he usually earns $4,000 to $5,000 a month.

He is also no longer driving a Premier taxi. He said on Saturday that he had left the company after three months because other cabbies there were unhappy with him. "They would see me in the lift and make comments at me," he added.

Premier Taxis confirmed that he is no longer one of its drivers, but declined to confirm if he left on his own or if his contract had been terminated. Its spokesman would only say that the reasons for his departure were confidential. Mr Muhammad said he is now driving for another cab operator.

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Background story

What Mr Muhammad told The Sunday Times at his first interview where both a reporter and a photojournalist were present

"My taxi is a money machine."

What Mr Muhammad told the photojournalist during an interview for The Straits Times' Through the Lens video series, when asked if it was true that taxi drivers cannot earn a lot of money

"I don't agree. If I tell you I earn $7,000, some of the taxi drivers outside also get angry, 'Wah lau, this guy, very cocky. Sure or not, $7,000?' But touch their heart, ask themselves, they know."

 What Mr Muhammad said yesterday, when asked why he gave the figure of $7,000 in the original interview

"Maybe I thought I was being asked how much a taxi driver can earn."