SPN seeks to resolve woes of rail squatters

IPOH: Syarikat Perumahan Negara (SPN) plans to discuss with the Transport Ministry and the Perak government about housing woes of squatters affected by the double tracking railway project from Rawang to Ipoh. 

The squatters had requested to buy housing lots which were presently only offered for rent, said its chairman Datuk Ahmad Zahid Hamidi. 

This was especially so for the 60 families from Kampung KTM in Jalan Spooner and Gunung Cheroh here who had refused to take up offers to rent flats at Medan Buntong Permai, he said. 

Ahmad Zahid said SPN was the contractor that built the 112 flat units for RM2.5mil on the land belonging to the Transport Ministry to relocate the squatters who had to make way for the railway project. 

Only 12 families took up the offer of paying RM100 for a tenure of five years for the three-bedroom flats that cost about RM42,000 each. 

“The squatters refuse to take the flats offer because they want to own a property,” he told reporters after chairing the Syarikat Majuperak Berhad annual general meeting here yesterday. 

Ahmad Zahid said it would be good too if the housing developer, the National Housing Department, was to sell the units to the squatters as the department would be able to recover its investment faster.  

SPN had completed building 273 flats and houses in Tanjung Malim, Sungkai, Kampar, Batu Gajah and Buntong for squatters in Perak. 

Except for the Buntong flats, all other housing projects were landed properties. 

On another subject, Ahmad Zahid who is also Bagan Datoh MP, urged the Foreign Ministry to discuss the safety of fishermen who had been constantly threatened by pirates from neighbouring countries. 

“We have discussed the matter with our navy and marine police to help safeguard our fishermen’s lives and catch but nothing much has bee done,” he said.  

Ahmad Zahid suggested that the Foreign Ministry bring up the matter with its counterparts from neighbouring countries namely Indonesia.  

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