Monday, August 4, 2008

Why No Housing Tribunal In Sarawak?

In Malaysia, Sarawak is the only state that has yet to set up a housing tribunal to hear complaints from house buyers against the developers arsing from the Sale and Purchase Agreement.

Should the purchasers encounter any problems or disputes pertaining to their properties, they can only seek redress through the court.

Nowadays, many developers in Sarawak are getting more and more irresponsible. As a result, the number of complaints from house buyers have increased drasticly. There are many cases where house buyers whom their newly purchased properties have serious defects due to usage of low quality building materials or that their properties are not built in a workmanlike manner or in accordance with the approved building plans.

For those who are poor and cannot afford to engage a lawyer, they have no choice but only eat "dead cat".

I see the reason put up by the Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Housing, Sarawak Abang Affandy Abang Annuar as to why the state government has no intention to set up the housing tribunal as unreasonable and irresponsible statement.

He told thesundaypost sometime in January, 2008 that "As it is now there are just not enough cases to warrant the setting up of a housing tribunal. It is just like setting up a court and is not easy to do."

In my opinion, whether there are enough or not enough cases of complaints from house buyers, it is necessary and the very duty of the state government to safe guard the interest of the house buyers because not everyone is rich enough to get a lawyer to represent them to fight for their rights under the agreement which they had entered with the developers.

Has it been because the developers are the "protected species" in Sarawak that the state government sees no urgency to set up the housing tribunal? Or has it been because there are many "kantows" in the protected species?

This morning, I hold a press conference at Taman Million, along Jalan Kempas, Kuching at the request of the purchasers because the developer has been very stubborn and not willing to carry out rectification works to the serious defects of their properties.

They bought the houses at a very dear price. Over RM330,000.00 for an intermediate double storey terraced house and over RM420,000.00 for a corner double storey terraced house.

They had made two trips each to the Ministry of Housing, Sarawak and MBKS for helps to their problems, but both authorities are not being helpful to them. Ministry of Housing promised to fix a date for all parties concerned to attend to solve the problem, but until todate it has not been materialized. As for MBKS, the officer in charged told the purchasers that since they had seek help from Violet of DAP, they cannot offer anymore help. How ridiculous!!

You sure will get shock of the poor and lousy quality of the houses which they had purchased. Furthermore, there are four houses which are now infected with termites!! No joke!! I cannot believe it when I saw it with my own eyes. Let me show you.

Picture1: Angry Mr. Kho is holding a broken piece of wood which had dropped from the roof truss of his unit!!

Picture 2: Poorly joint roof truss in every unit

Picture 3: Mr. Kho shows the low ceiling at the staircase. The height of the ceiling is much lower than the approved height. Mr. Kho's has to lower his head when he walks up or down the staircase to avoid the hit!!

Picture 4: Staircase timber handrail: poorly assembled and sharp pointing edges

Picture 5: Poorly finished floor skirting

Picture 6: Again, simply nailed roof truss with cracked woods

Can you believe MBKS has issued the Occupation Permit for all the houses which are full of defects?


Hostage said...

YB Violet,

I am dead against anyone buying any properties in Kuching and this is for a variety of reasons.

Among them:-

1. Cos do not justify what you get
2. Kuching have been over built
3. Buyers are enriching the developers and the ruling family
4. Buyers are paying for inefficient and out dated construction technology and via this Sarawak/Kuching contractors take 30-40 percent extra time to built houses and this is translated to hefty labour and holding cost for the developers/contractors and subsequently pass on to buyers
5. Many buyers are buying for investment and hoping that it will appreciate in value and subsequently resell it. The question is how many have actually make money investing in residential houses!!

On the Tribunal, it will take a long time and I suggest DAP start a column blacklisting Property Developers and their Directors instead as have been done by ad-hoc bodies in Semanjung in the Past.

It is a shame that we cry when we discover we are fleeced by this unscrupulous developers when no one is high lighting the present mirco economics of the housing situation in Kuching.

Hostage said...

Oh i forgot to add.

How are you going to deal with the officer who remark that since complainant have seen you they can not help them.

If I were you or the complainant, I will give them a piece of my mind and this is exactly what I did when enforcement officers told a friend of mine that they have to act as they receive complains from a "Government Staff".