‘My Sons Are Unemployed’ — 70yo M’sian Man Works As Grab Rider To Support Family

"Even if I’m tired, I have to do it. I have to work hard."
After having worked most of their lives, most old folks would look forward to spending their sunset years in comfort and leisure by travelling around the world or simple spending time with friends and family.

However, not all of them have the same luxury due to personal or financial circumstances, which was the case for 70-year-old Zakaria Abdul Wahab.

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70yo M’sian man works as Grab rider

Speaking to FMT in an interview, Zakaria said he previously worked as a driver for 22 years and served faithfully at the job until his contract ended.

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70yo grab rider zakaria abdul wahab
Photo via FMT

“After my contract ended, I was wondering what else I could do. I am old, after all. So, I decided to be a Grab rider in August 2021.”

The septuagenarian added that he works close to 12 hours a day and earns up to RM100 on a decent day. The only time where he sees his income slightly dip is when it rains, where he would head over to mamak stalls for a break and chit-chat with fellow drivers.

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“I don’t go home to rest. That’s a waste of time. I have friends who do that but I can’t do it. If I do, I know it will be difficult to go out again,” he said.

Family the main motivator

While most folks his age would be lazing around at home and enjoy their retirement days, Zakaria revealed that he became a driver to support his wife and two sons.

70yo grab rider zakaria abdul wahab on the job
Photo via FMT

I decided to do this because we need money for our daily expenses. Both my sons are staying with me and they are unemployed. So, I have to bear this and work.

“Even if I’m tired, I have to do it. I have to work hard. I don’t care about the hours. If the government can give RM2,000 to RM3,000 every month, then I can stop doing this!” he remarked.

No plans for retirement

Despite his age, Zakaria has no plans to kick back and enjoy his retirement years, adding that he was still healthy and found it “fun” to be a Grab rider.

He also had a word of advice to the younger generation in making sure they take joy and pride in their work and ensure everything is done well.

70yo grab rider zakaria abdul wahab looking elsewhere
Photo via FMT

Your heart must be happy. You need to enjoy it and not be sad. That is really important because when we are sad, we can get all sorts of diseases. So, enjoy it.

“We have a responsibility. We need to make sure everything is done properly.  “Don’t be lazy. Work hard,” he said.

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If you wish to contribute to Zakaria to ease his financial burden, you can contact him at 017-6811312.


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