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Accumulated pains for residents
12/07/2008 NST By Noel Achariam

The badly maintained SPPK flats in Cheras.

KUALA LUMPUR: Three years ago, the developer of the SPPK flats (Block One) in Cheras "left" the residents with RM30,000 in the "maintenance fees kitty".

The RM30,000 was the balance of the maintenance fees collected from the residents by the developer over the past 17 years.

Today, things look bad for the residents as they face debts of more than RM200,000 in maintenance fees that are required for the upkeep of their flats.

The maintenance fee is only RM60 monthly for each flat. But many residents just didn't bother to pay; some were just too poor to pay, and some are paying the price for it.

As a result, facilities at the flats, including lifts are poorly maintained. One of the residents who has to suffer now is V. Kanesan, a wheelchair-bound Form Four student with brittle bone disease. It's so hard for him to use the stairs. One lift often breaks down while the other has been out of service for the past seven years.

Gurcharan Singh, the treasurer of the Taman Bukit Cheras property management (formed by the residents themselves), said only 45 per cent of the 377 units have been paying their maintenance fees.

"How are we going to help the residents if they don't pay the monthly fees?" he asked.

"There is only so much we can do. We are stuck with trying to manage with what little funds that we have collected from the residents."

He pointed out that the monthly maintenance fees were used to pay Syabas, TNB and also for the general upkeep of the flats.

"It was already a sinking ship when we took over. The developer (Syarikat Perumahan Pegawai Kerajaan Sdn Bhd) gave us an option, take over or they would hand over the management of the flats to the land office.

"We had no choice but to take over the flats and face the debts amassed over the past years.

"We have managed to settle some of the debts and hopefully by the end of this year, we will have enough funds to purchase a new lift," said Gurcharan.

Gurcharan said he had written letters to various government authorities asking for help, but he had yet to receive an answer.

He said the residents now hope that Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, the current MP for Bandar Tun Razak, would look into their woes.

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