The Ministry of Local Government and Housing is identifying the land status and condition of several villages in Batu Sapi parliamentary and its two constituencies, Sekong and Karamunting which were involved in fires, recently.
Deputy Chief Minister who is also Minister of Local Government and Housing, Datuk Jaujan Sambakong said it is important for the Ministry to aware on the land status to enable future development, whether it is still suitable to be re-developed and determine the type of development that can be implemented in the area.
Commenting on the request to gazzette 18 settlements in Batu Sapi as villages, Jaujan said it will be expedited to facilitate the State Government to carry out development.
"This is important for State Government to determine if the land needs reclamation, what type of development can be implemented, what type of houses can be built either landed houses or apartments and so forth," he said, after visiting the Kampung Gas, Kampung Air and Kampung Karamunting on Monday.
Also present were Assistant Minister of Local Government and Housing, George Hiew, President of Sandakan Municipal Council, Datuk Peter Hii and Deputy President of Sandakan Municipal Council, Hamsan Awang Supain.
Kampung Gas, Kampung Air and Kampung Karamunting are located within the Batu Sapi Parliamentary and these villages were involved in a fire leaving hundreds of families homeless.
"I was informed that the Sandakan Municipal Council owned six acres in Kampung Karamunting, four acres in Kampung Air and 20 acres in Kampung Gas. I personally visited these villages to find out how many victims had been affected as well as check the land status and condition.
"The Ministry also received several requests from victims who hope that they can build landed houses compared to living in flats that have four to five storeys. Therefore, all these will be revised under the People Housing Project (PPR)," he added.
Jaujan said the State Government is determined to solve the issue as the fire victims are still living in community halls and some have rebuilt huts on the former fire site as they have no choice.
However, it is not easy to plan and implement certain thing as there are requirements, that needed to be met, said Jaujan.