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Buyers distraught over unfinished apartments

02/08/2007 The Star By Priya Menon and Vivienne Pal

Buyers of the Sri Puteri Service Apartment located in Section 20, Shah Alam, lose precious sleep each night worrying about their unfinished homes.

The development, a privatised project between the Shah Alam City Council (MBSA) and developer Khidmat Makmur Sdn Bhd, was supposed to have been completed by Oct 18, 2005, with modern facilities including a swimming pool, sauna, gymnasium and security service.

The project involved MBSA as the landowner, with the development (including sales) fully undertaken by the developer, who would in turn provide the council with living quarters, confirmed Shah Alam mayor Mazalan Noor during a press conference last Wednesday.

Despite several meetings between the buyers and MBSA and Khidmat Makmur Sdn Bhd executive director Datuk Manan Md Said, the project remained at a standstill due to financial woes faced by the developer.

Woebegone: Buyers walking through the grounds of the abandoned Sri Puteri Service Apartment in Section 20, Shah Alam.

The project’s initial cost was some RM40mil, and the increase in the prices of various materials had caused the cost to escalate – hence the financial constraint faced by the developer.

“We were disappointed during the first meeting with MBSA because they declined to take any responsibility. They said that it was all up to the developer,” said Sri Puteri Service Apartment and Shoplots Purchasers Union president Fadzil Sidek, 35, during a meeting with the press on Sunday.

Despite being given the opportunity by MBSA to come up with an action plan twice, the developer had failed to get additional funding to revive the project.

Buyers say that MBSA had given them notification that Khidmat Makmur's services had been extended a further three months from June 1, and that the developer might consider a partnership with LTH Constructions Sdn Bhd.

“We are wondering why MBSA did not terminate their services,” said Azirinda Mohd Sultan, 32.

“The only reason most of us bought the units was because MBSA was a part of it,” said Cheong Hoay Leng, 50.

Buyers’ complaints to the Housing and Local Government Ministry were turned down because the land is still considered commercial land under the Housing Development Act (Control and Licensing) 1966 and it still belongs to MBSA.

During the recent press conference, the mayor revealed that work on the project would resume within the next two weeks.

“The developer has managed to get additional funding from the bank, and as far as I know, they have also formed a partnership with another construction company,” he confirmed, adding that MBSA would be meeting with the banks, and the developers very soon to discuss the continuation of the project.

“We will be monitoring the project more closely in the future, and we will ensure that residents will not have to face any increase in maintenance costs. We hope the buyers will be patient.”


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