MJC Mutiara residents complain of cracked, sinking walls

KUCHING: Residents of No1 to No 26 houses at MJC Mutiara here are frustrated with the developer’s indifference to solve engineering issues affecting their houses.
The gate to Simon’s (right) house cannot be properly closed due to the sinking walls. Also with Simon are Chong (centre) and his special assistant Kelvin Yii.
Many of them have complained individually about the cracks on concrete walls and sinking walls in the past couple of years, but the developer has so far taken no serious action to resolve the matter.
Simon Ritom, owner of house No 25, moved into his ‘dream home’ in 2008. Little did he know that his beautiful dream has now turned into a nightmare when the walls of his house began to show cracks from 2011.
He brought the problem to the developer, only to be told ‘Sorry, your warranty has lapsed’ although the developer did eventually patch up some cracks following his numerous complaints.
“If it is a leaking roof or minor cracks, I can repair them  myself. But we are talking about the main pillars of my house, which isn’t just (any) minor defect. After complaining for three years, I gave up. And now, I cannot even close my gate,” he said when met at the residential area yesterday.
Simon said he was more concerned about his safety, and hoped that the developer would do something before any untoward incident happened.
“I don’t even know when the ceiling will fall. This is my life investment. When I bought the house in 2008, it was perfect. I was so attracted to it that I quickly signed the contract.”
Just as Simon was about to accept his fate, his neighbours — who face the same problem — decided to defend the interest of house owners there by approaching Bandar Kuching MP and Kota Sentosa assemblyman Chong Chieng Jen.
Prior to seeking help from Chong, the residents jointly wrote a letter to the developer in May. They appealed to the developer to look into the structural defects given that these cracks were not just cosmetic.
“The walls are actually sinking. The sinking wall can even be a safety hazard as it may collapse and cause injury. We have consulted an engineering company and we have confirmed that the cracks were caused by lack of structural foundation when the walls were built,” the letter stated.
However, their letter was apparently ignored because the developer did not contact any of the house owners.
Left with no choice, one of the residents, Wong Shian Long, approached Chong, who then set up a meeting with the developer on July 19.
“If not for Chong, the developer wouldn’t even want to take our calls, let alone meet us. I have lived in Mutiara for at least eight years, and I have been begging the developer to look into those cracks since six years ago,” lamented Wong.
According to Chong, the meeting in July went well with the developer pledging to send engineers within two weeks and rectify the problems faced by the residents within two months.
Three months on, the developer has taken no serious effort to solve the issue as of yesterday.
Chong said many residents told him that the developer did send some ‘young trainees’ to walk around the gated community but they did not enter any house to check the cracked and sinking walls.
“All that the residents want is for the developer to resolve the problem. You cannot just leave them high and dry. They gave the developer a chance by not going to the press but went to meet them in July. Yet nothing was done.”
He said he would write another letter to the developer as well as the Ministry of Housing as the next course of action, if the developer continued to remain deaf to the complaints.
TheBorneoPost October 24,2016