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Job well done, so Palm Court JMB set to rule
03/08/2009 Kharleez Zubin

DESPITE being embroiled in endless tussles with a small group of residents and owners of Palm Court Condominium in Brickfields over unpopular house rules, the present committee members of the Joint Management Body (JMB) may retain their hold in the upcoming annual general meeting (AGM).

Though unpopular, the JMB - which took over early last year - has managed to put a lid on petty crime and the presence of strangers in the gated community. Palm Court Condominium, also fondly known as Paambu Court among the Indian "expats", is now viewed as being reasonably safe and families with teenage daughters need not stand guard at lifts and gates to accompany them home as before.

"Before, there will be rowdies with beer cans in hand loitering near the lift areas disturbing girls and women and passing all kinds of filthy remarks," said an owner- resident who lives on the seventh floor with two teenage girls.

But now, the owner, who wanted to be identified as Rosie, is happy the JMB has managed to put a stop to unwanted people from loitering in the vicinity.

Like Rosie, most of the owners who are staying there are happy with the JMB and would like to see them continue their good work.

K.K. Supra, a resident, said the JMB cannot exercise its rights fully because it needs the cooperation of all the owners of Palm Court.

"Some 30 per cent of the owners do not stay here and they are happy as long as they can get their rentals.

Security and cleaniness are not their problem because they do not face any of the problems we are facing," he said.

However, the business owners there accuse the JMB for their loss of earnings. "Since the JMB took over and made it difficult for people to gain access to the area, all our businesses have suffered," said N. Sugumaran, 41, who runs a vegetarian restaurant there.

However, the JMB contends that because of the existence of these shops, including an Internet cafe and beauty saloon, many outsiders are walking indiscriminately into Palm Court.

Just last week, the police and Immigration raided Palm Court and arrested several people at the Internet cafe, including the operator, while several Indian nationals employed by these businesses without proper documents fled and took cover in friends' units.

With all the good work put in place by the JMB, the current office bearers may see themselves voted back in come Aug 9 to continue the clean-up of Palm Court.


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