The weakness in the people's housing project (PPR) system must be urgently addressed, said Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.
He said the system must be streamlined to ensure only those eligible would be able to rent, effectively preventing the same problem Penang had faced after it evicted 22 tenants deemed as unqualified.
"We hope the housing ministry will conduct a national exercise to ensure that PPR units are only allocated to deserving Malaysians who qualify for such subsidised housing," he said in a joint press conference with state exco Jagdeep Singh Deo.
He also said the amicable resolution of the Taman Manggis controversy, with the tenants being offered rent-to-own units and other units under other schemes, showed the state's political commitment in tackling the issue.
"We have achieved our objective of repossessing the units from tenants found to be ineligible for the units and these units will be reallocated to deserving cases," he said.
Jagdeep reiterated that PPR units are only for those matching criteria such as having a maximum household income of RM1,500 as well as for applicants and their spouses to be Malaysians.
He said the state housing department will conduct periodic audits on all PPR tenants in the state to reaffirm their continued eligibility. Those whose incomes have surpassed the limit should also apply for rent-to-own or low-cost housing as the next step, he added. Those notified to vacate should also quickly contact the state housing department for alternative accommodation, he said.
"It is unnecessary for them to hold demonstrations, all they need to do was to come to us and apply for other schemes, we will give them priority," he said.