Johor official: Affordable homes not missing, just not built yet

Ben Tan
Johor Housing and Rural Development Committee chairman Dzulkefly Ahmad said the 9,818 units have been deferred and will only be constructed in the next two years. — Picture courtesy of Dzulkefly Ahmad

JOHOR BARU, Sept 5 — Units that Umno Youth alleged are missing from Johor’s affordable housing scheme (RMMJ) have yet to be constructed, a state official explained today.

State Housing and Rural Development Committee chairman Dzulkefly Ahmad said the 9,818 units have been deferred and will only be constructed in the next two years.

“Checks revealed that some of the developers have financial difficulties, where the project can only be completed in 2019 or 2020.

“In addition to that we also found that there were changes to the original plans, where the number of units supposed to be under the affordable housing category will change or cannot be built according to the amount required,” he said in a statement.

Johor Umno Youth chief Mohd Hairi Mad Shah highlighted the shortfall on Sunday and demanded an explanation from the state government.

According to the exco, the state housing taskforce statistics for January 2018 stated that 3,696 units will be completed in 2018 while 41,140 units will be delivered between 2019 to 2020, for a total of 60,846 units between 2014 and 2020.

Dzulkefly added that the number of affordable housing units due to be ready in 2018 ranged from 13,536 units (statistics as of September 2017) to 4,600 units (statistics as of November 2017) and 3,696 units (statistics as of January 2018).

“However, the total number of units expected to be built ahead of 2020 is almost the same as between 60,846 to 61,172 units.

“From the above explanation, there is no issue about the missing 9,818 units as alleged. The amount remains but due to the factors stated earlier, the units will not be completed by this year,” said Dzulkefly, who is also the Kota Iskandar assemblyman.

Affordable housing, especially in developed areas of Johor, has been a regular challenge due to increasing demand and rapid urbanisation.

Recently, the Pakatan Harapan (PH) Johor government pledged to build 100,000 units of affordable houses in the next five years.

This figure is from the 60,000 units initially planned under the previous Barisan Nasional (BN) administration.

The state affordable housing scheme was launched in 2013 to provide basic homes and as part of the previous government’s resettlement efforts.

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