Kampung Baru residents have ‘attitude problem’, Federal Territories minister says

A cyclist passes a carwash in Kampung Baru, the last remaining traditional Malay settlement in Kuala Lumpur, January 18, 2015. — Reuters pic
A cyclist passes a carwash in Kampung Baru, the last remaining traditional Malay settlement in Kuala Lumpur, January 18, 2015. — Reuters pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 1 ― The redevelopment of Kampung Baru is complicated by residents at the Malay enclave who are demanding to be paid up to 10 times the market worth of their plots of land, minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor said.

The Federal Territories minister said the residents of one of the last surviving Malay settlements in the country’s capital city felt they should get between RM3,000 and RM5,000 per sq feet if they sell their land in the redevelopment project, although the government has seen sale transactions in the area going for RM500 per sq ft.

“One is an attitude problem,” Tengku Adnan told Malay Mail Online in an interview at the Kuala Lumpur City Hall headquarters here yesterday.

“The people there feel they should get RM3,000, 5,000 per sq ft...They think they're living next to KLCC,” he said, referring to the Kuala Lumpur City Centre that is the heart of the national capital’s central business district and which also houses the country’s iconic Petronas Twin Towers.

Tengku Adnan said the second problem in the Kampung Baru redevelopment project was multiple ownership of land titles, due to the Malay reserve land being passed down through generations.

“So sometimes there’s small pieces of land, 4,000, 6000, 10,000 sq ft, there's ownership of 40, 50 people. We need to solve all this,” said Tengku Adnan, who is also Umno secretary-general.

The minister said the government does not want Kampung Baru residents to sell their land, but to come on board as “partners” with the developers.

The Kampung Baru redevelopment project comprises four phases spanning 20 years under the Kampung Baru Detailed Development Master Plan that was launched last January.

Local daily New Straits Times reported last January that the project’s development and construction costs are estimated at RM43 billion and RM30 billion respectively.

The paper quoted then-Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as saying that Kampung Baru will be turned into the capital city’s new economic enclave as well as a Malay cultural centre.

According to Tengku Adnan’s office, two construction projects have already been completed, which are Masjid Jamek in Kampung Baru and a 21-floor business suites tower by Arina Development.

Projects under construction in Kampung Baru include a hotel, service apartments, as well as a mixed commercial and residential property.

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