Wednesday January 16, 2013
MP: Deserving fishermen to get free houses in new housing estate
KUCHING: The first housing estate dedicated to fishermen in Sarawak will be situated in Santubong, about 40km from here, as part of the Government’s effort to alleviate their suffering.
The houses will be given free to deserving fishermen much like the Federal Government’s Hardcore Poor Housing Project (PPRT) scheme.
In pointing out that this was a pioneer project in Sarawak, Santubong MP Datuk Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said the funding for the project would depend on the number of fishermen who would be eligible to receive the house.
“The proposal has been approved and what is left now is for the state government to identify a site for the fishermen housing estate, preferably near coastal or near existing fishing villages,” he told reporters after giving out the RM200 Fishermen Living Allowance (ESHN) at Kampung Buntal here yesterday.
“The state and Federal governments would work together on this. A meeting will be held to discuss if this programme would be carried out with existing aid by the state government or separately.
“I have met with Housing Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg to head the collaboration with the Federal Government because he has experience in carrying out the Federal-funded Rumah Mersa Rakyat programme,” said Junaidi.
Previously, fishermen in Santubong received a Fishermen Housing Aid in which the Government helped to fund the rebuilding or repair of their houses. Some 525 fishermen have benefited from the programme in the constituency.
Apart from this, Junaidi also proposed that a cooperative be formed to help boost the income of fishermen.
“I have discussed with all Area Fishermen Associations (PNK) with 5,000 members in Santubong.
“I am confident that if the cooperative is set up, it will be successful and more fishermen will become members of PNK and the cooperative.”
During the allowance presentation ceremony earlier, Junaidi said since the programme was carried out in 2008, the Federal Government had spent about RM67.5mil for fishermen in the state.
“This programme will go on every year as long as Barisan Nasional is the government.”
A total of 258 fishermen from Buntal PNK and 81 from Satang Biru PNK received their ESHN.