Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim slammed Penang Housing Committee chairman Jagdeep Singh Deo saying the latter’s statement that no PR1MA projects were being built in Penang was a desperate attempt by opposition parties to divert attention away from far serious matters such as the Tanjung Bungah landslide tragedy. (BERNAMA)

KUALA LUMPUR: The DAP had been likened to a “broken record” for harping on the same stale issues against 1Malaysia People’s Housing Programme (PR1MA).

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim slammed Penang Housing Committee chairman Jagdeep Singh Deo saying the latter’s statement that no PR1MA projects were being built in Penang was a desperate attempt by opposition parties to divert attention away from far serious matters such as the Tanjung Bungah landslide tragedy.

“They keep harping on the same stale issues against PR1MA, while using inaccurate information to further create confusion among the rakyat, in the hope of gaining political mileage.

“PR1MA to date has five projects in Penang involving 15,392 units of homes. These five projects are PR1MA at Sungai Pinang (6,796 units), Teluk Kumbar (3,944 units), Permatang Pauh (1,017 units), Batu Ferringhi (1,248 units) and 2,387 units at Tasek Gelugor.

“Of these projects, Permatang Pauh PR1MA development had commenced construction while Batu Ferringhi and Tasek Gelugor are still pending approvals. PR1MA is still in consultation with the state government on its PR1MA projects at Sungai Pinang and Teluk Kumbar.

“This goes to show Jagdeep’s claim that no PR1MA projects are being built in Penang is baseless and malicious. He needs to get his facts right.

“Instead of bickering, he should assist PR1MA by helping to speed up the approval process. This is after all for the good of the rakyat,” he said in a statement tonight.

Shahidan also refuted the opposition’s claim that only 1,332 units of PR1MA homes had been built nationwide.

He said the affordable homes project had progressed extremely well, having 10,199 units built nationwide and is optimistic of achieving the target of completing 17,000 units by end of this year.

He threw shades at opposition parties, asking them to stop using the housing programme for the M40’S as ammunition to discredit the Barisan Nasional government.

“PR1MA should be applauded for their commitment not only in providing fairly-priced homes for the middle income groups (M40), but also in helping to bring about positive changes in the country’s property sector as a whole.

“PR1MA, via its 1.5 million registrants, has proven that there is indeed a huge demand for this type of product category and today, more private developers are venturing into this,” he said adding that prior to PR1MA, not many developers were interested to build homes for the M40.

“In just a few years, PR1MA has proven themselves to be more than just a property developer. Their contributions should not only be seen purely on the brick and mortar aspect but in its innovative approach that has resulted in the betterment of the industry.

“We should give credit when it is due. I think it is fair to say that PR1MA as an innovator has brought about positive changes to the country’s property sector as well as their commitment in the creation of a harmonious community,” he said.

Recently, Jagdeep had claimed that although the Penang Island City Council (MBPP) has approved two PR1MA housing projects in the island but till date, no PR1MA projects were built.

He had asked for clarification from Penang Federal Action Council chairman Datuk Seri Zainal Abidin Osman on the actual number of the approved projects and the number of units in the plan.