By Fadhil Yunus
It was a dream come true for more than 300 Brunei citizens who applied for the Kampong Rimba National Housing Scheme when they received the keys to their new homes from His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam yesterday.
The Bulletin understands that some of the recipients had been waiting for over 20 years to hear the good news.
While it has certainly been a long wait, they are eternally grateful for the generosity and kindness of His Majesty in giving Bruneians the opportunity to write a new chapter in their lives: Moving into a place they can now truly call "Home Sweet Home".
In an interview with a group of elderly people whose applications for the Kampong Rimba National Housing Scheme were approved, they expressed their relief that they would now be relocated to a better environment.
Some of them spoke of their past hardships, where they had to bunk in with their relatives for years at cramped accommodations.
They said that there were no words to describe their happiness, as well as the gratitude to His Majesty for easing their burden.
Recipients of the new accommodations also enjoy free provisions such as electricity and water.
Mazlan Hj Idris, who had been waiting for over 20 years for news of his application, said that monthly repayments for the new houses are "affordable".
Even though some of the houses cost between $30,000 and $45,000 to build, recipients will only have to pay just over a hundred dollars each month.
Close relatives may also be eligible to inherit the houses but they will be required to continue making monthly repayments until the oustanding balance has been settled.
Following the ceremony, His Majesty visited some of the receipients' houses and toured Dato Basir Primary School, Soon Lee Mega Mart and Lambak Kanan Public Library.
- Borneo Bulletin
(1st July 2010)