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Ong: Ceiling to be raised
The Star 30/06/2004

KUALA LUMPUR: The RM25,000 ceiling for claims awarded to aggrieved housebuyers by the Tribunal For Homebuyer Claims will be raised under proposed amendments to the Housing Development Act.

Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting, who disclosed this yesterday, however, did not reveal the new ceiling.

He said the tribunal, which started hearing here in February last year and headed by Kamardin Hashim, had done a very good job, adding that it was able to hear between 60 and 80 cases a day.

"It has resolved 3,354 of the 6,604 cases as of last Saturday." Selangor topped the list with 4,658 of the 6,604 cases, followed by the Federal Territory (763) and Negri Sembilan (313).

"Hearings will also be conducted in Kedah and Penang from September under a move to decentralise the service," he told, reporters after launching the Tribunal For Homebuyer Claims: A Housebuyer's Guide here yesterday.

The guide, at RMl0 per copy, is published by the National House Buyers Association Malaysia (HBAM).

Ong also reminded developers who had yet to settle the claims awarded by the tribunal to do so immediately, otherwise his ministry would take legal action against them.

He said that there were 66 such developers. Ong said it was up to the tribunal to decide whether the housebuyers were entitled to interest if developers paid them later than the date set by it.

HBAM secretary-general Chang Kim Loong said the ceiling for claims should be raised to RM50,000.

On the fire in a third-floor unit of the City Hall Flats in Taman Wahyu l, Jinjang, here, which killed a couple and their son, Ong said the Fire and Rescue Department would submit a detailed report to him.


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