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Building of houses for poor speeded up

KUCHING: Thanks to the cooperation of the armed forces under the Blue Ocean strategy, houses for the poor in the rural areas are being built faster and at a lower cost.

Secretary-general of the Rural and Regional Development Ministry Datuk Ibrahim Muhamad said today that the strategy enforced last year had cut red tape to enable projects to be implemented quickly.

In an interview with Bernama and RTM, he cited a project for Orang Asli to show how expenditure had been reduced.

"RM17 million was given to the Armed Forces to buid houses for poor Orang Asli last year. But the project was completed at a cost of RM14 million, thus saving us RM3 million," Ibrahim said.

He said the cooperation between the ministry and the armed forces under the strategy was initiated in line with the 1Malaysia concept of People First and Performance Now.

Ibrahim said the participation of the armed forces in providing housing for the poor would not affect contractors because they handled only 30% of the projects under the strategy.

The projects, which are part of the National Key Result Area programme, focused on rural areas, especially in Sabah and Sarawak. — Bernama

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