Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan says Seremban will get city status in 2018. File pic by IQMAL HAQIM ROSMAN.

SEREMBAN: Seremban district will get city status next year, says Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan.

Towards this, he said, the state government was in the final stage of merging the Seremban Municipal Council (MPS) and Nilai Municipal Council (MPN), whose respective areas of jurisdiction were located in Seremban district, to form a new local authority with the status of city council.

“We are waiting for a new building to be renovated and readied for operation by the Seremban City Council.

“This building located in Rahang previously housed a hypermarket and when ready and operational, it will facilitate official dealings of the public with the city council,” he said after chairing a state executive meeting, here, today.

Mohamad said the Seremban City Council would also have regional offices in certain areas like Nilai, Mantin and Rantau to ease management and enforcement.

However, he said, the merging of the two entities would not involve the reduction of staff or higher assessment rates in the Seremban area, as increasing rates was not a condition to attaining city status.

“So, I hereby announce that the assessment rates in Negeri Sembilan for 2018 will not be raised,” he said, adding that the last time the rates were reviewed was in 2006.

In 2012, Mohamad had announced that the proposed merging of MPS and MPN to form a city council was approved by the federal government.

At the moment, Malaysia has 13 cities, namely Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh, Kuching, Johor Bahru, Kota Kinabalu, Shah Alam, Melaka, Alor Setar, Miri, Petaling Jaya, Kuala Terengganu, George Town and Iskandar Puteri.

On another matter, Mohamad said the Negeri Sembilan housing portal, launched on Nov 30, which provided a link between developers and property purchases could also help solve the problem of unsold Bumiputera housing units faced by developers.

“The public can access the portal for information gathered from various developers on housing in the state according to the districts and areas, while they can also book online for the units they wish to purchase.

“They can know the price, house design, facilities offered and the most important, we also display the Bumiputera lots which are still unsold,” he said.

Mohamad said developers were therefore encouraged to participate by subscribing to the portal so that they could advertise their unsold units, while the state government was not charging a high fee for the online facility, which was actually beneficial for them.

The Negeri Sembilan housing portal at is an information platform based on real time housing information and real time booking system. It is a joint initiative by the state government and the Negeri Sembilan branch of the Real Estate and Housing Developers Association Malaysia.

The eight developers registered with the portal so far are IJM Land Bhd, Matrix Concepts Holdings Bhd, Sime Darby Property, OSK Property Holdings Bhd, KT Lee Reality Development Sdn Bhd, Eng Han Property Sdn Bhd, Gemencheh Development Sdn Bhd and Bukit Kenyalang Development Sdn Bhd.--BERNAMA