Strict vetting needed for proposed second home programme in Sabah, says consumer group

KOTA KINABALU: Strict vetting should be done for all applicants for the state government's proposed Sabah-Malaysia My Second Home programme (MM2H), urges a consumer group.

Sabah West Coast Smart Consumers Association president David Chan said that the Immigration Department and police should vet the applicants to ensure that foreigners taking up the programme were genuine and would not pose security risk to the state.

Chan said there was a possibility of bad hats including scammers to use the opportunity to slip into the state using the proposed programme that allows for applicants to stay a minimum of 30 days in the state to qualify.

"The second home programme is good for the state but we must make sure that it is not abused for illegal activities as it will tarnish our state," Chan said Sunday (Feb 26).

The Sabah Cabinet earlier this month had agreed in principle for the MM2H for the state.

Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Christina Liew said that the state's package would be "unique and attractive" to woo foreigners to take up the second home programme.

She said under the tentatively approved policies for the second home programme, applicants should meet age requirements, medical certification and set up a minimum RM200,000 fixed deposit account in Sabah.

Applicants would only be eligible to buy property (apartments) worth a minimum of RM600,000 and above, she said.

She said there must be a minimum stay of 30 days a year and the approved duration for an individual or family is for 5+5 years in Sabah only.

The second home programme is yet to be officially launched.

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