SIXTY urban hardcore poor families in Kuala Lumpur had an early Hari Raya Aidiladha present after receiving keys to their new homes.
“It was a big surprise to find out that I would be receiving a proper home,” said one of the recipients, Rukmanihakim Zakaria, who has been staying at a squatter house in Lembah Pantai, Kuala Lumpur.
The 49-year-old said he was thankful to be picked as one of the recipients of the Baiti Jannati Project (BJP) by Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB).
The odd-job worker has been staying in his makeshift house for close to 20 years with his wife and five young children.
For heart patient Norazita Zainal Abidin, making ends meet has been tough.
The 62-year-old, who lives alone, said she hopes to find a full-time job and provide for her college-going daughter until she completes her studies.
“Doctors’ appointments take up a lot of my time as I have to seek different treatments each time,” she said during the presentation ceremony at Pantai Eco Park, which was attended by Federal Territories Minister Khalid Abdul Samad.
Each recipient received keys to a unit in a People’s Housing Project (PPR) in Kuala Lumpur.
At the ceremony, TNB chief corporate officer Datuk Roslan Ab Rahman said BJP was part of its corporate social responsibility programme in line with the government’s call for more government-linked companies to assist in fixing and providing homes to the needy.
“BJP focuses on repair works, building homes and financing the purchase of homes for the needy and urban poor including single mothers and senior citizens,” said Roslan, adding that the project began in 2007.
Since then, 703 homes have been repaired or financed in Peninsular Malaysia at a cost of RM30.46mil.
The project only began in 2014 for the Federal Territories where 109 families had benefited so far.
“This year, 60 families will be receiving homes which we had purchased through TNB’s business zakat contribution,” said Roslan.
He said the recipients were shortlisted by the Federal Territories Islamic Religious Department.
The ownership of the units will be transferred to the recipients and they are not allowed to sell them to a third party.
They can, however, hand it down to their family members or next-of-kin.
“Out of 60 recipients, 23 are from the Lembah Pantai constituency where our headquarters are located, hence, we decided to assist more families living here,” said Roslan.
The project is also supported by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) which identified suitable PPR units for the recipients.
Roslan said BJP was only meant for Muslims as the funds used to purchase the units were from zakat contributions.
“We have a similar project which is the Mesra Rakyat Programme where we assist needy non-Muslims,” he said.
At the event, Khalid lauded the initiative, adding that the government is committed to assisting the B40 and M40 groups as well as all PPR residents.
“With this effort, they (recipients) can now put their rental savings to good use, such as funding their children’s education or for their families’ daily needs,” said Khalid who later visited PPR Seri Cempaka in Lembah Pantai to meet new homeowners.
Khalid, Roslan and Lembah Pantai MP Fahmi Fadzil also handed out daily necessities to the families before treating them to a buffet lunch at the park.
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