Weekly Highlights

With more SUPP ADUNs Elected, Autonomy of Sarawak Used As A Tool For The Rich To Exploit The Poor

With more SUPP ADUNs elected, there is now less voices for the ordinary people. Even the autonomy of Sarawak is now a tool for the rich to exploit the poor. On the issue of the house purchasers’ rights, SUPP’s deputy minister, Michael Tiang, is now openly taking the side of developers against the interest of ordinary house purchasers. He is even trying to silence the voices for house purchasers by labelling such voices as “politicising”.

The law in relation to housing development is one that is within the sole power of Sarawak, ie Sarawak’s autonomy. It is thus disheartening to note that, with such autonomy, the law in Sarawak gives less rights and protection to ordinary house purchasers as compared to the law in West Malaysia.

In West Malaysia, house purchasers’ rights are better protected when the 24 months for completion of houses by developer starts to run at the time when developers collect booking fees from house purchasers. However, in Sarawak, house purchasers’ rights are curtailed by Sarawak’s own law.

In Sarawak, the 24 months for completion of the house only start to run when the Sale and Purchase Agreement is signed and stamped, which in many cases, are months after the payment of the booking fees.

Under the Sarawak Housing Development Ordinance, a developer is allowed to collect booking fees only when all approvals for the development projects have been obtained and that the development project can kick off. By virtue of the standard format of the Sale and Purchase Agreement provided under the same law, 24 months is deemed the reasonable time for completion of a housing project.

Therefore, when a developer collects booking fee from a purchaser, the developer is in the position to complete the housing project within the 24 months.

Otherwise, the developer is not entitled even to collect booking fees from any purchaser. There is thus no justification for the extra months between the collection of booking fee and the signing of the Agreement.

To provide for the time to start running from the date of the Agreement rather than the payment of booking fee, is tantamount to allowing the Developer extra time for completion of the housing project, and that extra time given to the developer is at the expense of the purchasers.

In the past, SUPP has been well-known as a tycoon party, a political party for the rich. It seems that even as the young generation rose in ranks in SUPP, such culture never changed.

It remains a party for the rich, with its elected representatives speaking up for the rich, at the expense of the ordinary people.

Chong Chieng Jen

MP for Stampin

DAP Sarawak Chairman

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