The New Straits Times Online 

The New Straits Times Online 

IPOH: Something is wrong when at least 500,000 people are waiting to buy low-cost houses.

"How can half a million people register for so many years and still not get one?" Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan said yesterday.

The open registration system (ORS) for low-cost houses at the ministry's website (www.kpkt.gov.my), said Ong, started more than five years ago.

The number of applicants was growing and many were inquiring about low-cost homes, especially in the cities, he said after presenting ang pows to about 1,200 senior citizens here yesterday.

He said the Federal Government had previously handed low-cost houses over to state governments to be handed out but would now participate in the distribution of the homes.

"If we build houses in Taiping, we will print out the names of applicants who live there. By doing so, we will reduce the number of applicants."

The list of applicants in the ORS would have to be checked and those found to be deserving would get priority to buy the low-cost homes, he said.

"We have discovered that some people have rented the houses to Indonesians, which we cannot allow."

It was better that applicants buy the houses rather than rent them at RM124 a month, unless they were among the hard-core poor, single mothers or disabled, he said.

The Federal Government would build 4,000 low-cost houses this year and would also consider entering into joint-ventures with private companies to build more of such homes, he said.

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