GEORGE TOWN: State Housing, Town and Country Planning Committee chairman Jagdeep Singh Deo has dispelled allegations that the Penang government does not want to work with the Federal Government in building affordable homes.
He said federal agencies such as the Penang Bumiputra Participation Committee (JKP) and Penang Regional Development Authority (Perda) had alleged that the Penang government had deliberately delayed the approval to build 9,444 units of affordable housing in Penang.
The problem, he said, was the selling price listed by the federal agencies.
“The proposed selling price for their projects is about RM1.8mil for a residential unit on the island and RM800,000 in Seberang Perai.
“Penang people will not be able to afford such prices. It is over-priced.
“If the federal agencies have the intention (to build affordable housing), the Penang government will not be an obstacle to their applications.
“In fact, the Penang government welcomes it,” he said in a statement yesterday.
Jagdeep also denied allegations that the state government was unable to carry out state-level affordable housing.
“The state has already planned to build 22,512 units of affordable housing for Penangites in all five districts in the state.
“In fact, three projects – Phase 1 Bandar Cassia in Seberang Perai, Teluk Kumbar and SP Chelliah in Penang Island – have already started and the developments are expected to be completed by 2016, 2017 and 2018 respectively,” Jagdeep said.
On Sunday, Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan said the state government should approve applications from federal housing agencies to build 10,000 affordable homes in Penang.
Abdul Rahman said that if the state government could not afford to build affordable housing, then they should not delay the Federal Government’s attempts to do so.
He said the Federal Government had been submitting applications to build affordable housing for the last three years.