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Wednesday, January 20, 2016

PPR applicants stormed hall to get forms

PUTATAN - An invitation to buy People's Housing Project (PPR) forms at the Community Hall, here, ended in fiasco on Monday, when applicants forced their way into the hall, breaking a twin door in the process.

More than 3,000 people were trying to get their hands on the forms that were sold at RM5 each for the 1,000 units in Meruntum and Ketiau when completed.

The incident forced the District Office to upload the form on its Facebook page later the same day, which some felt they should have thought of earlier.

According to several witnesses, some applicants became impatient when they were made to wait for hours outside the hall, alleging the District Office did not coordinate the whole process properly.

A video that went viral revealed an ajar twin door being pushed by a crowd with a policeman shouting angrily at those trying to knock down the door.

"Masuk-lah, Masuk-lah, Kalau Berani (Come in, come in, I dare you)," said an unidentified officer, warning those who defy him of arrest and that their names would be cancelled.

However, the crowd decided to defy him and minutes later the door came crashing, resulting in hundreds invading the hall.

Some tried to stop the crowd by carrying wooden planks in what appeared to be an attempt to scare the crowd.

A witness claimed that when the District Office officers entered the hall around 8.30am, they were no lines or barricades set up at the hall to ensure the whole process is carried out in an orderly fashion.

It is understood only one entry was created, forcing thousands of people to wait outside as the heat from the sun picked up.

He noted that many people were already waiting at the hall since 6am and number grew bigger by the hour.

"I gave up when the entry point was changed by them (officers). I was waiting for my turn at the initial entry point since 7.30am when they decided to change the access door to another side of the hall at 10.30am," he said.

The government approved the 1,000 units of the home under PPR project to aid low income earners.

On Jan 13 2013, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Yahya Hussin announced that the project is to help Sabahans living in Putatan squatter areas to own a unit.

The deadline to submit the forms was Feb. 16.

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