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From our last poll, it appears that almost 60 per cent of you felt that affordable housing would be any home priced up to RM240000 rather than RM400000. (Mind you, this would be what is affordable to the middle class rather than the low-income group, who would struggle to buy even a RM72000 home.)

This figure of RM240000 also tallies with a Penang Institute researcher’s opinion that the price of an affordable home should be between RM180,000 and RM240,000, three to four times the average household yearly income (based on about RM5000 per month in 2012), in line with the international yardstick for what constitutes an affordable price for a home.

Is that why there is a glut in ‘affordable housing’? (Because many would be unable to afford housing from RM240000 to RM400000.)

Let’s do another poll of monthly household income (husband and wife’s combined income only) and see if that supports the finding in the earlier poll and compare the outcome to the eligibility criteria of income thresholds for ‘affordable housing’ as laid out by the state government. But bear in mind that based on the demographic profile of readers of this blog, the poll result would probably be skewed towards the incomes of the middle- to upper-middle class strata of the population.

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We shouldn’t have been too surprised by the recent earthquake and tremors in Sabah. There had been ample warning of the prevalence of earthquake faults in the state, and our rescue services have no reason to be unprepared.

The former director of the Minerals and Geosciences Department Sabah, Alexander Yan, had warned, apparently in 2010, that several previously identified active or potentially active faults were confirmed as earthquake-generating faults. He pointed out that “these faults are to be found in the Ranau area within the Central-North Seismic Zone of Sabah, as well as in the Dent-Semporna Peninsula Zone.”