Posts Tagged ‘Housing’

RRI Indian workers for generations!

November 29th, 2011
|  Subscribe in a reader | Subscribe to poobalan.com by Email


Just imagine this, generation after generation working away, and now left with nothing. All this while, quarters provided, got salary, and enjoyed at relaxing environment, but their future is very bleak without ownership of house nor any suitable skills for uplifting their economic status. Can you imagine what is the fate of their kids?  Did the previous generations ever thought of getting out of the vicious cycle or were they ever given a chance to do so?

Can imagine similar scenario happening for estate workers.

Hopefully in this case, the government is able to provide the families a piece of land or other award for their hard work and loyalty.

 

THE 86-year-old Rubber Research Institute of Malaya (RRIM) in Sungai Buloh, Selangor, will soon make way for a new integrated development in the Klang Valley and the 300 workers out of the 660 are worried that they would be forced to relocate to other research stations in various states.

The 1,348ha site, owned by the Malaysian Rubber Board (MRB) since 1925, is expected to be become a commercial, residential and transport hub under a joint venture between the Federal Government and the Employees Provident Fund.

The workers will have to be relocated to other research stations in Sungai Sari in Kedah, Bukit Kuantan in Pahang and Kota Tinggi in Johor.

Solid foundation: One of the oldest houses still standing within the grounds of RRIM. The 70-year-old house is now abandoned after the family moved out.

Some 243ha would be retained for RRIM facilities, which will include the headquarters, Centre for Excellence that houses latest research and development amenities, a business cluster to encourage foreign investments, the Royal Commodity College trains workers for the industry and a museum.

The site is one of the federal assets to be redeveloped under the Greater Kuala Lumpur Strategic Development Project, an initiative under the 10th Malaysia Plan to revitalise the city.

A. Vellaiamah, 70, worked as a rubber tapper at RRIM for 41 years.

The mother of four is suffering from an enlarged thyroid and doctors had advised her not to go ahead with the surgery as there might be complications.

Three of her children have died of cancer.

Her father Ayamuthu was the only chief security guard at RRIM in the 1940s. Vellaiamah’s husband, Kandhasamy, was a chief driver here who died 26 years ago.

Her son, Gunasegaran, who represents the family’s fourth generation, now works at RRIM.

“My paternal grandmother worked as a rubber tapper, too. I have spent most of my life in this estate. I am sad with the impending development as that would mean we would be displaced to other states and my grandchildren won’t have the opportunity to work at RRIM.

“This place holds sentimental values for me because the Indian community are the ones who made RRIM what it is today. I consider my family to be one of the pioneers of RRIM,” she said.

For Vellaiamah, she will mostly miss working in the serene environment as well as the freedom for her three grandchildren to play at the football field and spend time with other kids at the RRIM quarters.

Rubber estate takes up 939ha while the remaining area houses nurseries, laboratories, midstream and downstream pilot plant factories and staff quarters, two schools (a Tamil and Islamic religious school), a mosque, a Hindu temple and recreational facilities.

All in the family: Janaky (back row, left) and her grandchildren S.Sangeetha (from left) S. Thanabalan, S. Tines, S. Thineswary and S. Arnin who are living at the RRIM quarters.

R. Janaky, 58, who works as a general worker, will be retiring next year but wants to extend her employment until the age of 60.

“I don’t know where they will post us to next. I have worked at RRIM for 31 years. My husband. a supervisor, has also just retired. My son works as a general worker at RRIM, so you can see the tradition we maintain in the family because we love working here.

“It is close to impossible to find a beautiful green lung like this in Klang Valley in this day and age. We would like to remain here and I hope the management will listen to our plight,” said the mother of five and grandmother to nine.

P. Chinna has a year before he retires from RRIM as a field recorder.

The 58-year-old is a third generation from his family working at the estate.

“My grandfather and father both worked at the RRIM experiment station in Sungai Buloh.

“I was born within the grounds of RRIM,” he said.

The father of three brought up his children on the estate.

“There are a lot of good memories and we have built precious relationships with the people here.

“I am just worried that couples who both work at RRIM will be relocated to different states which could disrupt their family union.

“The management should at least consider retaining about 80ha to house the workers. The relocation move could prove stressful to a lot of us,” said Ramasamy.

source: http://thestar.com.my/metro/story.asp?file=/2011/11/26/central/9964591&sec=central

Budget 2012

October 7th, 2011
|  Subscribe in a reader | Subscribe to poobalan.com by Email


You might want to have a peek at Budget 2011 last year to get an idea of this year’s budget. This year around, PM Najib spoke for an extra 19 minutes. The budget speech can be found here.

The budget costs RM232.8 billion, up 9.4%, with the operating expenditure at RM181.6 billion or 78%, (up 11.5%) and development expenditure at RM51.2 billion or 22% (up 4.1%).  RM20.5 billion would be for servicing debt.

You can compare with Pakatan Rakyat’s shadow budget here.

Last year, Malaysia’s FDI growth was the strongest in Asia and in the first six months of this year have reached RM21.2 billion. Economic growth for 2012 is expected to be between 5 and 6 percent, despite a global economic slowdown. In 2012, private investment is forecast to climb 15.9%, supported by foreign and domestic investment. GDP in the first 6 months of 2011 was 4.4%, driven by strong domestic consumption. In 2012, the service sector is expected to grow 6.5%, the construction sector 7% and GDP is forecast to be between 5 and 6%.

RM29.8 billion allocated for investment in infrastructure, industrial and rural development. RM13.6bil allocated for the social sector, including education and training, welfare, housing and community development.

Some of the main points:

Economic/Industry

  • Government to further liberalise 17 services sub-sectors, including healthcare and logistics, and in places enabling 100% foreign equity. This will allow 100 per cent foreign ownership of  the 17 service subsectors.
  • RM18 billion of the RM20 billion PPP Facilitation Fund will be used for high-impact projects, with RM2 billion for bumiputera entrepreneurs.
  • KL International Financial District –  income tax break 100% for 10 years, duty stamp exemption; development allowances and capital allowances; income tax break 50% for property developers in KLIFD
  • RM978 million allocated to accelerate the development in five regional corridors: Coastal Highway JB-Nusa Jaya; Taiping Heritage tourism project; Besut agropolitan project; Lahad Datu palm oil cluster project; Water supply in Samalaju
  • Felda to be listed in Bursa, along with “windfall” for settlers.
  • To extend tax exemption on issuance and trading on foreign currency sukuk by three years
  • To cut tax for three years on expenses incurred in issuance of sukuk wakala starting 2012.
  • To implement RM6 billion private sector-financed special stimulus package for infrastructure works.
  • To implement RM98.4 billion rolling plan until 2013 for high-impact development projects
  • To grant tax benefits to investors who use Malaysian Treasury Management Centre to accelerate financial markets development. These include income tax exemption of 70 per cent for five years, withholding tax exemption on interest payments on borrowing and stamp duty exemption on loan and service agreements.
  • subsidies will be maintained at same amount (RM33.2 billion).
  • franchise fees borne by local franchisees will be allowed tax deduction in efforts to develop the local franchise industry and Malaysian brands.
  • Pulau Langkawi will be redeveloped with the Langkawi Five Year Tourism Development Master Plan, to be launched with an allocation of RM420 million to be used to restructure the Langkawi Development Authority, set up a park rangers unit, upgrade museums, beaches and small businesses as well as provide a more efficient transportation system.
  • Hotel operators in Peninsular Malaysia investing in new four and five-star hotels will be given pioneer status, with 70 per cent income tax exemption or 60 per cent investment tax allowance for five years.

Education

  • RM1 billion allocation through a special fund for the construction, improvement and maintenance of schools in need of upgrades. RM500 million would be allocated to national schools while Chinese and Tamil vernacular schools, mubaligh schools, government religious schools and Mara junior science colleges will receive RM100 million each. (as usual, too little for vernacular schools).
  • development allocation amounting to RM1.9 billion would be spent on all types of school consisting of national schools, national-type Chinese and Tamil schools, mission schools and government-assisted religious schools
  • Abolishment of school fees for primary and secondary education. Currently, students in primary and secondary schools are still required to pay RM24.50 and RM33.50, respectively, for co-curriculum, internal test papers, Malaysian Schools Sports Council fees and insurance premium. These payments will be abolished from 2012
  • One-off RM100 for each school pupil aged six to 16
  • One-off RM200 cash voucher for books  for all school pupils and higher learning institution students
  • Private schools to get 70% income tax break, 100% tax allowance for up to five years, double deduction for overseas promotional expenses to attract more foreign students and import duty and sales tax exemptions on all educational equipment.

Civil Service

  • Civil service salary hikes of between seven and 13 per cent (for those who accept the new scheme, SBPA).
  • Increase in the rate of automatic annual increments in civil service salaries of between RM80 and RM320 (not salary revision as many report/understand).
  • retirement age raised from 58 to 60.
  • teachers to be given promotion on time-base promotion.
  • Tuition fee assistance for civil servants who want to study part-time – for 5,000 places for masters and 500 places for doctorate degrees. Total allocation – RM120 million

Police/Army

  • One-off cash payment of RM3,000 for each family of ex-military and police personnel who served the country during a decades-long communist insurgency (62,000 families)
  • RM200 million for upgrade to modern policing and RM442 million to upgrade housing quarters, stations and training.
  • RM500 million under the Army Care programme for upgrade and maintain army camps and quarters.
  • RM50 million for ex-servicemen retraining.

 Pensioners/Retirees

  • Increase of 2% annually for pensioners starting from 2013.
  • bonus RM500
  • 50% discount on LRT and monorail
  • no outpatient fee for government hospitals/clinic including dental clinics (doesn’t make much difference because its the medicine that costs a lot)

 Transportation

  • full exemption of import tax and excise duty for hybrid and electric cars to be extended until end of 2013.
  • 100% excise duty and sales tax exemption for locally-made taxis.
  • No excise duty or sales tax for transfer ownership.
  • No road tax for individually-owned budget taxis.
  • 2% subsidy on loan for new locally-made taxi.
  • RM3,000 assistance for disposal of old taxies exceeding seven years but less than 10 years. If 10 years old and above, RM1,000 is given. (wonder what’s the focus on taxis is all about. I thought we have too many taxi licenses?)

 Property

  • Real Property Gains Tax increased from 5% t0 10% if property sold within 2 years, 5% if sold between 2 and 5 years, and no tax if sold after 5 years.
  • Ceiling for house prices under a government deposit guarantee scheme for first-time house buyers to be raised to RM400,000 from RM200,000 (My First House Scheme)
  • RM443 million fund to build 15,000 units of housing for lower- to middle-income earners

Employment

  • 1% increase in employer’s EPF contribution (12% increase to 13%). (Most likely to cause unhappiness among employers).

Household

  • One-off cash assistance of RM500 to all households with a monthly income of RM3,000 and below, costing RM1.8 billion, to benefit 3.4 million households (54% of households). Head family must register with LHDN.

Orang Asli

  • RM90 million for basic needs, including treated water and income generation, RM20 million for the community affected by Cameron Highlands landslide.
Rural Development
  • RM1.1 billlion for rural electricity supply, especially Sabah and Sarawak.
  • RM5 billion will be given to develop rural infrastructure, including RM1.8 billion to the Rural Road Programme and Village-Link Road Project.
  • RM2.1 billion allocated to expand clean water to rural 220,000 homes.
  • The government will expand the programme to supply clean water to the rural community in Sabah by RM50 million.
  • In Felda settlements, RM400 million upgrade of water supply system in Pahang, Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu.
  • RM150 million for rural public transportation, via SME bank for bus companies in low interest loans of 4% interest
Poverty/Low-income issue/Welfare
  • Build 85 government-subsidised discount grocery stores nationwide (Kedai 1Malaysia)
  • RM20 subsidy for electricity bill to be continued (only if your bill is RM20 or less).
  • RM1.2 billion for welfare programme: for senior citizens RM300 per month, poor children RM100-450 a month, disable RM150-300 per month.
  • To open 30 Agro Bazaar Rakyat for agriculture products.
  • Extend Menu Rakyat 1Malaysia to 3,000 operators, where breakfast provided at RM2, lunch at RM4.

SME

  • To establish RM2.6 billion worth of funds for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
  • RM100 million SME Revitalisation Fund, for loans of up to RM1 million made available for entrepreneurs to be made available from January 2012
Social Justice
  • contributions to missionary schools and houses of worship will become tax exempt (hopefully its not an excuse to reduce allocation. As it is, there’s no mention of any allocation in the budget for houses of worship).
Health
  • RM15 billion operation expenditure and RM1.8 billion for development expenditure. Upgrade of 81 rural clinics and 50 new 1Malaysia clinics.
  • Hospital Kuala Lumpur, the oldest in Malaysia, will be upgraded to be the country’s premier hospital. RM50 million to construct outpatient block for Hospital Kuala Lumpur. This will come from the RM300 million allocation to upgrade the hospital with new equipment

Sports

  • Aim to build 150 futsal courts and 30 football fields with artificial turfs. RM50 million allocated for football fields, RM15 million for futsal courts (We get rid of open areas and then scramble to build courts/fields again).

This time around, the impact for those in the middle income (household > RM5000) and those who are single can’t be found. There’s no mention of income tax reduction, nor any sin tax. There are plenty of benefits, but my worry is that its value is quite small until can’t make any immediate crucial impact for citizens. Perhaps the housing schemes and education benefits would be the ones which are impactful enough. Good thing that the subsidies are maintained for the coming year.

The budget targets the relevant groups: police/military, Felda, teachers, pensioners, retirees, rural areas, East Malaysia, civil servants.

sources:

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2011/10/7/nation/20111007162147&sec=nation

http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/2011/10/07/shot-in-the-arm-for-domestic-economy/

http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/178023

http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/178022

http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/178016

http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/178029

http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/177993

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/school-fees-scrapped-in-budget-2012/

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/snapshot-of-budget-measures/

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/cash-handouts-for-lower-income-households-students/

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/putrajaya-moots-1pc-rise-in-employers-epf-contribution/

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/real-property-gains-tax-up-to-curb-speculation/

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/with-eye-on-polls-government-pledges-more-cash-all-around/

http://www.mole.my/content/wide-ranging-perks-budget-2012

estate folks get clean water 100 years later

September 5th, 2011
|  Subscribe in a reader | Subscribe to poobalan.com by Email


I’m at loss at what’s to be proud here. Maybe the state exco can highlight it. 100 years (ok, make it 54 years, since before Merdeka it was under colonial rule), last raised in February, settled in September. One wonders what all the previous excos and authorities were doing all this while.  Should have hauled up the estate owner, slap a hefty fine or even jailed some of them. Oh wait, does our law protect such citizens?

Families in an estate here waited a century for clean water supply. And now their dream has come true.

Previously, residents of the Leong Hin San estate had to depend on a small well and an unhygienic pond for water.

However, state exco VS Mogan, who oversees the estate affairs, human resources and environment portfolio, negotiated with Syarikat Air Negeri Sembilan (SAINS) to connect water supply for the residents’ houses.

“The residents received the water supply about a month ago and the cost of the installation for the houses was around RM120,000,” he said.

According to Mogan, this was another example of how MIC and the Barisan Nasional government were concerned about the welfare of estate workers.

“If there are any other residents in the estate who still do not have water supply, please come forward in order for us to help you,” he said.

Meanwhile, Mogan also directed the estate management to carry out maintenance work on the workers’ houses as well as to ensure hygienic living conditions.

FMT highlighted the plight of the estate workers in February.

The estate’s union leader S Murugan told FMT then that residents found snake skin, dead frogs and goats in the pond from which they collected water.

The union had raised the issue with the estate management for years, but the problem was not fixed.

source: http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/2011/09/05/100-year-wait-for-water-supply-over/

YB Manoharan’s seven motions for Indian community

August 29th, 2011
|  Subscribe in a reader | Subscribe to poobalan.com by Email


The seven motions:

1. Felda-like scheme involving 2000 acres of land for 200 hardcore families.

2. RM10 million fund to be set up to assist Indians in small and medium enterprises.

3. set up an Indian affairs bureau under the purview of the menteri besar.

4. at least 10 acres of land for all Tamil and Chinese schools in the state.

5. renaming Jalan Barat in Petaling Jaya to Jalan V David to commemorate the late unionist.

6. seven percent discount for all poor Malaysians who are purchasing homes from the Selangor State Development Corporation (PKNS).

7. “no demolition” order or shifting of temples erected in the state before 2008.

Number 7 was accepted with a modification:  no demolition or shifting a temple without the approval of the executive council in charge.

Motion number 1 is difficult due to land scarcity, but I believe Selangor still got plenty of land outside Klang Valley which can be utilised for agriculture. The state government can even consider reserving certain percentage for the poor Indians in any schemes being implemented/planned.

Motion 2 is not a big problem. Can easily be set up.

Motion 3 is even easier.

Motion 4 is noble indeed. Must be supported.

Motion 5, well, not exactly top of my list. Can even consider naming some of the new projects being done by the state government instead of renaming, if its an hassle.

Motion 6, totally agree. Not sure if anyone in the right mind will disagree to this.

Motion 7, as it has been amended, we can hold the executive councillor in charge responsible if any demolition happens.

Out of the 7, 3 are outright motions to help Indian community, while the other 4 are mixed or of no direct help.

Gotta agree with the YB, this kind of motion was unheard of before this. I hope its retabled and let’s see how the state government responds.

I’m not sure what the senator Barat Maniam meant by saying that MIC representatives will support the motion if BN wins Selangor. Someone need to table the motion FIRST, before you can support it. So, would MIC representatives make promise to table such a motion?

 

Just days after Pakatan Rakyat lawmakers conceded that the opposition pact, which rode to victory in five states on the wave of Indian support in 2008, had failed the community, a legislator revealed that several motions beneficial to Indians had been dismissed by the Selangor State Legislative Assembly.

According to Kota Alam Shah state assemblyman M Manoharan, the assembly has dismissed seven motions which he had tabled in July.

He said if the motions had been passed and become law, not only would the Indians have benefited but all the poor in Selangor would have also found reprieve.

Explaining the motions, Manoharan said he had moved for a Felda-like scheme involving 2,000 acres of land to be set up for 200 hardcore Indian poor in Selangor.

He had also moved for a RM10 million fund to be set up to assist Indians in small and medium enterpries in the state.

“I also tabled a motion to set up an Indian affairs bureau under the purview of the menteri besar and asked for at least 10 acres of land for all Tamil and Chinese schools in the state,” he said.

The other three motions he had tabled were renaming Jalan Barat in Petaling Jaya to Jalan V David to commemorate the late unionist, a seven percent discount for all poor Malaysians who are purchasing homes from the Selangor State Development Corporation (PKNS) and a “no demolition” order or shifting of temples erected in the state before 2008.

“But the only motion that was accepted by the assembly was the temple order.

“But that too they (Pakatan lawmakers) tweaked to read no demolition or shifting a temple without the approval of the executive council in charge,” said Manoharan, who added that he will again table the same motions in October sitting of the assembly.

Land and housing

Manoharan, who was upset with the dismissal of his bids, said it was “high-time Indians enjoyed the benefits denied to them since Independence”.

“About one-third of the entire Indian population in Malaysia lives in Selangor.

“If the motions had been passed and become law, they would not only help Indians but also all those who are poor in the state.

“I asked for the land so that we can teach the Indian community to cultivate it for agriculture or livestock.

“This would also empower our youths and deter them from joining criminal activities,” said Manoharan,who is from the DAP.

On the housing issue, he said owning a house was a basic necessity for everyone.

He added that PKNS was in a position to assist Indians and the low-income earner acquire homes.

“PKNS is an established property company and it makes money from its housing projects.

“Surely, it can help our low-income people by offering discount.

“Besides, the Menteri Besar (Khalid Ibrahim) is the chairman of the government-linked agency and he can monitor it directly,” said Manoharan.

Malay votes

Asked why the other Pakatan state assemblymen refused to support his motion, Manoharan said it could be due to fear of losing Malay votes.

However, he added that even the Malay assemblymen were aware that the Indians were left behind in many areas.

“Some lawmakers did come to me after the state assembly meeting and said my ideas were good.

“But when I asked why they didn’t support it then, they kept mum,” he said.

However, Manoharan stopped short of criticising the Pakatan state government, saying the assemblymen now enjoyed more freedom to table their motions unlike in the previous state government.

“The Indian representatives then would not even dare to table such motions.

“I must thank our current speaker (Teng Chang Khim) for allowing more freedom in the assembly.

“And I am going to table the motions again in the next state assembly sitting in October. I’m confident my fellow Pakatan assemblymen will support me,” said Manoharan.

‘Good ideas’

Meanwhile, newly appointed Senator V Subramaniam, however, supports Manoharan’s motions, saying the ideas “were good”.

Subramaniam, however, conceded that allocating 10 acres for Tamil schools in Selangor would be tough as some schools were located in densely populated areas like Petaling Jaya where land is scarce.

“However, the rest of the motions are good. The (state assembly’s) rejection shows that Pakatan is not sincere in helping the Indians despite riding high on the community’s votes in 2008,” said Subramaniam, who is better known as Barat Maniam.

Subramaniam, who is Petaling Jaya MIC’s division chief, said if BN wins Selangor in the next polls, MIC representatives will support the motion to improve the Indians’ lot in the state.

“The ideas are in line with the 1Malaysia concept. If we win in the next polls, we will look out for the welfare of all Malaysians.

“Besides, that is why we are elected into the post,” he said.

Last week, Indian DAP leaders conceded that the opposition pact had failed the community after having a closed-door meeting involving 50 DAP members, including lawmakers.

One DAP member said that Pakatan is doing “another BN” for Indians in Selangor, Penang and Kedah.

Among those present at the meeting were DAP national vice-chairman and Ipoh Barat MP M Kulasegaran, Penang DAP deputy chairman and deputy Chief Minister II P Ramasamy, Perak DAP deputy chairman and Tronoh assemblyman V Sivakumar, Perak DAP vice-chairman and Sungkai assemblyman A Sivanesan and former ISA detainee V Ganapathirau.

source: http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/2011/08/29/sgor-rejected-motions-to-improve-indians-lot/

low cost flats are modern day slums?

August 12th, 2011
|  Subscribe in a reader | Subscribe to poobalan.com by Email


Wonder how true this is. I know some of the low cost flats look unhygienic, cramped and one feels unsafe to be in the vicinity.  Its takes some awareness on the residents part as well as the provision of proper facilities on the developer/authorities behalf.  Living in small flats or apartments is not conducive if crowded with 5 to 6 people (or even more). Some families take care of the elderly and/or siblings, so don’t be surprised if there are even 10 people living in one small flat. Have seen such cases in newspapers.

The lack of facilities (and maintenance) deprives the children and youths of outlet for their energy and time. They may end up associating with wrong groups and wrong activities that lead to social and criminal problems.

Having mixed-development projects is good way of integration, but nowadays we are seeing mostly high-end and very high-end projects being launched. Just reading newspapers on weekends can show how many housing projects being advertised, and I don’t think can find any below RM500k/unit.

Developers here will be asked to build affordable houses for those in the lower income group rather than flats which are cramped and “always associated” with social problems.

Likening poorly maintained flats as “modern-day slums”, Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Moha- mad Hasan said the people, especially those with many children, should be allowed to live in a more conducive environment.

He said the state government was prepared to lower the 30% quota for low-cost homes in a project if developers were willing to build low-cost houses rather than flats.

“Also, since the demand for low-cost flats here is extremely poor, developers should look at ways to provide dwellings that are attractive,” he said, adding that it was pointless to relocate squatters to only house them in such units later.

Mohamad said building low-cost flats was also not a viable solution as property near such units might not be able to attract buyers.

“It would be better if the developer can build 30 to 40 affordable houses rather than build 100 units of flats which remain empty.

“We want a win-win situation for developers, house owners and low income earners. Build houses that everyone can call home,” he said.

Mohamad said the state government would also direct developers to increase the minimum width of low-cost houses from the present 16ft (4.8m) to 18ft (5.4m).

“Houses need to be bigger so that occupants are comfortable.

“We are reviewing this and its implementation is expected soon,” he said.

Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Chor Chee Heung made similar calls to developers, saying they should opt for low to medium-cost houses for the lower income group in areas where land was not expensive.

“Landed homes are more comfortable for those with a big number of family members,” he said.

He said if developers found it difficult to build landed low-cost houses due to the high prices of land, they must still ensure that the apartments they constructed were of good quality.

source: http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2011/8/12/nation/9283985&sec=nation