A housing developer was ordered by Sarawak Housing Purchaser Claims Tribunal to pay RM16,320.20 in damages to the house purchaser for the delay in handing over a double-storey detached house at Taman Wawasan, Miri.
Its president Dato Maznah Dasmi ordered the damages to be immediately paid to the purchaser even though the developer was not present at the hearing.
"The developer agreed to deliver the house within two years after the signing of Sales and Purchase agreement. The purchaser, Kho Wei Kiang @ Kester, has paid in full (RM665,000) the price of the house.
"This penalty should serve as a warning to would-be offenders, otherwise house buyers who have paid in full will not have their houses delivered," she told a press conference after the proceeding at the court complex here yesterday.
Also on the panel were Alhadi Ibrahim and Trabawan Mandi.
According to Maznah, the purchaser signed the Sales and Purchase agreement to purchase the house on Jan 20, 2015, with the duration of construction works stipulated to be 24 months, or the latest by Jan 20, 2017.
However, she said the house was not delivered until Nov 24, 2017, and thus the developer had to pay Kho daily penalty of RM54.65 for 308 days or RM16,629 for the delay in delivering the house
Maznah said the panel calculated the damages due to the purchaser in accordance with the Sales and Purchase agreement, which was three per cent of the total cost of the house.
If the developer failed to pay the penalty, she said the Tribunal would refer the case to the State Attorney General for further action.
"If no payment is made within 45 days, we will send the case to the State Attorney General, and if heard in court, the fine will not exceed RM5,000 or a jail term not more than two years or both.
"This is in addition of the penalty. If the offender still ignores and doesn't pay then apart from the RM5,000 fine the offender will have to pay additional fine of RM1,000 daily until payment is made," she said.
She said the Tribunal received many cases of similar nature, and last year alone they handled 60 cases mostly in Kuching particularly on delay in delivery and defects in workmanship.