Appeal for a ‘new lease of life’

Sheila Sri Priya

NST Online

Taman Medan assemblyman Haniza Talha (third from left) at a meet-the-resident session on New Year’s Day

PETALING JAYA, 3 January 2009 : Owners of expiring leasehold houses in Petaling Jaya Old Town may soon be able to sleep in peace.

The Selangor menteri besar is expected to look into the issue in two weeks’ time and the residents are hopeful of good news.

The residents of leasehold houses were told about this by Taman Medan assemblyman Haniza Talha on Thursday.

During a meet-the-resident session on New Year’s Day at Pasar Othman, Old Town, Haniza said: “Edward Lee (Bukit Gasing assemblyman) is still gathering the required information. We are going to meet the MB in two weeks to discuss the land code issue.”

Residents in Sections 2, 3, 4, and 14 are still waiting for an tension to their leasehold or better still, be issued with freehold grants.

Many residents in Old Town have only five years left before the 60-year-old leasehold expires.

Their plight may see some positive response from the menteri besar as Perak recently issued freehold titles to 11 homeowners in Kuala Rui near Grik.

On other issues, Haniza urged the Petaling Jaya City Council to consider issuing temporary business permits to hawkers.

“It’s better to have them do legal business then for them to be involved in illegal activities like selling pirated discs or worse, involved in serious crime.”

Haniza also proposed four-storey flats and developing human capital development in Taman Medan.

She pointed out that the affordable quality housing (AQH), concept is used in developed countries to provide a better environment in areas with social problems.

“At present, the quality of life in areas like Taman Medan is deplorable.

“Most urban slums areas have a high crime rate. Without proper guidance, the younger generation won’t be able to get out of the circle of poverty and may turn to illegal activities,” she said.

Haniza said in the United States, AQH houses were built in areas with community problems.

“If an area is stigmatised by prostitution, houses like these are built with nice gardens and other supporting facilities. This leads to the community prospering and slowing down and eventually stopping undesirable activities.”

Haniza complained that lifts in high-rise buildings were often not functioning and this added to the stress among residents. Also the high-rise buildings are unsuitable for a large community.

Haniza said she will propose the AQH project in the next state executive council meeting.

Petaling Jaya Selatan MP Hee Loy Sian, who was at the meeting with residents. said he hoped that the government would not raise toll rates and water prices this year.


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