Some drawbacks in the Australian Buying Off the Plan

Buying off the plan means buying property with the advance of some deposit (usually at 10% of the purchase price), while the remaining 90% will be paid after the developer completes constructing the property together with the necessary certificate of completion/fitness which warrants delivery of vacant possession and occupation. This can protect purchasers against losses due to incomplete project or abandoned property project.

Nonetheless, there are some drawbacks of this plan. This is revealed in an article entitled “in Asking the right questions pays off when buying off the plan” appeared in Herald Sun written by Neelima Choahan in Herald Sun Real Estate –

“New data from property consultants Charter Keck Cramer reveals the number of off the plan apartment releases soared 103 per cent from just over 7000 to more than 14,000 between 2009 and 2013.
But the biggest gains have been in the outer suburbs of Melbourne where off the plan releases increased a whopping 2350 per cent from 42 to 1029 apartments, a whopping 2350 per cent jump.
Charter Keck Cramer director Sam Nathan said Melbourne’s apartment sector had matured significantly in the past five years.

“Melbourne’s favourable planning strategy, dynamic private development sector and supply opportunities have driven the new releases,” Mr Nathan said.

However, he said the apartment market in the city fringe, inner and middle regions was still in its infancy.

Property group 360° director John Meagher said buying off the plan held a lot of financial advantages for well-informed buyers.

But for the uninformed there were many hazards that could turn the expectation of a great investment into a financial and emotional headache.

“Buying off the plan is a literal term for purchasing property that has not yet been built,” Mr Meagher said.

“In other words, it is making a decision to buy an apartment or house based on the documentation available prior to construction.”

Mr Meagher, who has just released a guide to buying off the plan, said buyers must consider the financial, technical and legal requirements before signing on the dotted line.
“Buyers should ask how much deposit needs to be paid, when the balance of purchase price is due to be paid under the contract of sale,” he said.

Mr Meagher said buyers in Victoria should investigate how much stamp duty they would have to pay on settlement.They should also find out the due date for payment and the sunset clause, Mr Meagher said.
“The sunset clause is the date by which the developer has to deliver the property to the purchasers,” he said.

“If the developer doesn’t deliver the property within the timeline, the purchaser is entitled to a reimbursement of the deposit and can walk away from the contract of sale. “Alarm bells should ring if the sunset clause is too long.”

Being aware of important technical information when buying off the plan made all the difference between a good and bad investment, he said.

“Some agents will quote room sizes using measurements taken to the exterior of the building,” Mr Meagher said.

Other things to look out for were high rental guarantees used to set prices above market value and if car parking and air conditioning were included in the price.

Remember to ask the question, ‘What is included in this price?’, he said. “Don’t always assume you are buying what you see in the developers’ sales centre or brochure,” Mr Meagher warned. “Additional priced upgrades may be shown in the display.”

Buyers should check the developer’s background, obtain proof of progress and keep the contract handy during final inspection to double-check before settlement.

He urged buyers to go with experience. “You don’t want to be guinea pig, buying in a development where the developer is going through the processes for the first time and learning at your expense,” he said.
“The bottom line is you can never ask too many questions or have too much information about a property you are interested in buying.”

Practical planning pays off

BEFORE buying her new off-the-plan apartment, Euphie Rong made sure she asked all the right questions.
Despite that, the end product wasn’t quite what the financial markets client specialist imagined.
In fact, the one-bedroom abode in the CBD surpassed all her expectations.

“Thankfully, it was even better than my expectations,” Ms Rong said. “It has very good views of the city and lots of sunlight.”

Ms Rong, who has entered into the off-the-plan market for the first time, said doing her homework was the key to success.

“I looked at the plan carefully and I got as much information as I could,” she said.

“I also researched the developer and the builder to see what their track record was in terms of delivering on time and the quality of their project.”

Ms Rong also compared the established one-bedroom apartments in the CBD on offer before making her choice.

She said buyers should consider the “hard” and “soft” elements of the development before making a decision. “The hard (elements) are the construction, the quality, the material, the location — so the property itself,” Ms Rong said.

“The soft (elements) are the pricing and your own requirements.

“No one knows the project 100 per cent — either the sales person or the project manager. But if you ask the questions, you’ll get the answers.”

Email on issue of rehabilitation of abandoned housing project by liquidator

The email reads as follows:


I have read many articles from you blog with regards to abandoned housing development. I am writing to seek your advice regarding my situation and also on behalf of the to other purchasers.

If you don’t mind, let me explain the brief story. We bought a semi D house in mukim … in 2008. There are only 10 houses in the development called taman … and the developer was …. Subsequently the developer was liquidated and …. has been appointed as the liquidator. At this juncture the houses were completed up to 75% except for electrical , water pump house and roadwork.

It has been more than a year but the liquidator has not made any progress. Latest news we heard that the liquidator is now  applying to the court for a scheme to revive development but with the condition that we need to top up almost RM 30 000 on top of the original purchased price. Some purchasers are not able to do so due to financial constraints.

In such a scenario, do we have any rights to demand that the liquidator complete the houses without any additional payments required from purchasers? Should they refuse , what other options do we have ?

I apologize that this email may disturb you but we would be very grateful to hear your opinion


Dear Dr

Thank you so much for the prompt reply. I have another few questions if you don’t mind. If the S and P is terminated , I am not sure whether the liquidator will return our money because the title has been transferred .

If the liquidator terminate and give us the half completed house (as is where is basis) , I am not sure how to continue the development on individual basis since it is a Semi D.  I would appreciate your knowledge sharing on such case.


My answer:

Waalaikum salam

I sympathize with your fate.

My advice is this:

If you have an option, you should terminate the sale and purchase agreement and request the liquidator to repay all your moneys paid to the wound up developer. You can apply to the court to terminate sale and purchase agreement and ask the liquidator to repay all you moneys paid to the previous developer. Buy a new completed house. Full stop.

I think the liquidator has no source of money to rehabilitate the project. So that he asked you to top up. He also needs to get profit from the project as fees. If you think that you have adequate patience, please bear with the liquidator to complete the rehabilitation. If not, ie if your feel that this is not worthwhile, terminate the sale and purchase agreement and ask the liquidator to repay back all your moneys.

 This email is my personal opinion and made on without prejudice basis.

All the best.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nuarrual Hilal Md Dahlan, UUM, Kedah

If you want the completed house, you have to add up RM 30 k. You have to cooperate with the liquidator in order to complete. Nonetheless, you will be required by the liquidator to sign a waiver letter which states that the liquidator will not be responsible to any liability and faults of the wound up developer company. The waiver letter also may contain a statement that you waive all damages/compensations arising from the losses you suffered due to the abandonment. New S&P agreement may need to be entered into between you and the liquidator. The terms may be different from the original S&P and that your rights may be marginalized in order to protect the interests of the liquidator.

Question: Whether this new S&P has been approved by the Ministry of Housing?

If you are not agreeable to have your abandoned unit be revived due to complications and other troubles, you can/may terminate the S&P and claim for all the moneys paid to the developer, including damages until full settlement. In this case, you also need to file proof of debts and submit it to the liquidator. You will be considered as an unsecured creditor of the wound up housing developer company and may entitle to a refund of all your moneys and other damages.

The question whether the land has been transferred into your name does not matter as the contract imposes the developer to complete the house with vacant possession and with the CCC obtained. Even though the title has been transferred into your name, the developer is still in breach of the contract in that he has not yet completed the house, deliver vacant possession and provide the CCC.

I think in certain circumstance, it is appropriate for you to terminate the S&P and claim for refund and ask for damages. All these must be supported with court judgment.

This advice is made on a without prejudice basis.


A New Email on the Grievances of an Abandoned Housing Project Purchaser

Dear En. Hilal,

I read your articles on abandoned housing project. Being very convincing with your expertise in this field, here I would like to get your brilliant  and tips.


My name is…. In 1998, I purchased a unit of apartment in…. This project was ran by …. (the developer) I get into a contract with … (the bank) to finance my purchase of the apartment unit. …had released the 1st 10% of my loan to …(the developer).

In Dec.2002 this project was declared abandoned by KPKT (Ministry of Housing and Local Government). Few years later … (the developer) was declared bankrupt. Few years after the declaration that this project was abandoned, I had requested …(the bank) to close my loan account as I would like to settle all the 1st 10% which was disbursed to…(the developer), envisaging that I want to avoid paying the interest for that 10% for good. The bank told me that was not possible.

In 2006, I went oversea to further study and till now still in oversea. I did not have any contact with the bank anymore. The interest from my housing loans kept on accumulating plus all legal fees, late payment fees and other related fees.

This month Jan 2014, by chance I had contacted the organizing committee of purchasers of…(the developer) project and he told me that the project was taken over by another developer but my unit fall under cancelled project, whereby the developer had received the approval from the court to cancelled the project of my unit and will reimburse all the money the purchasers had spent to buy the unit in that parcel, they will reimburse ONLY the amount that the bank had released to…(the developer) and the 10% down payment, other related cost like lawyers fees for the bank and the developer and related fees will not be included.

I have contacted the related persons from the new developer, and they had informed me that they had released the cheques under my names to…(the bank) and the cheque was cleared in Nov 2013. The bank did not contacted me, I understand because I was not contactable. Then I contacted the person in-charge from the Loan monitoring unit in…(the bank) and they admitted that they had received and cleared the cheque.

I have requested the Bank to reconsider and recalculate the settlement of my debt to…(the bank), and I have also requested them to minus the 5 years waiver exemption of paying the interest for that abandoned project as announced by the Government, and I requested the bank to minus all legal fees too during the 5 years waiver / exemption of paying the interest.

My Questions

  1. Am I correct to request all those 3 issues to be reconsidered for the settlement of my loan with…(the bank) for this abandoned project? If not, could you please advise or suggest me what actually the correct thing to do or to request?
  2. Do I have to provide the Bank with the necessary docs related to this issue? If yes, what are the documents would be?
  3. I have also requested the bank to remit all the balances from that settlement amount to my personal account.

 Below is the draft of my email to the person in-charge in …(the bank). I really appreciate if you could have a look on my drafted email below and please feel free to amend or add any wording if you think necessary/appropriate. I really appreciate if you could give me the feedback ASAP so that I could contacted those persons accordingly ASAP too.

Assalamualaikum …,

As per our discussion on the phone this morning, could you please proceed with the necessary for my below requests pertaining to the settlement of my HL with …(the bank) for the abandoned project under…(the developer).

The Request

  1. I would like to request the waiver of interest exemption as announced by the government for any abandoned project. this waiver should be commenced from the date the project was declared abandoned by KPKT (Kementerian Perumahan dan Kerajaan Tempatan/ Pihak berkuasa yang berkenaan with maximum terms of 5 years.
  2. I would like to request the waiver of all legal fees imposed on this account during that waiver period too with the reasons explained in my previous email.
  3. I would like to request that all the balances from this settlement to be refunded to my …(my bank) account no…………………………………………..

Thanks and kind regards

 My answer…


I feel sorry for the disaster that strikes you.

This is an opinion regarding your case. Nonetheless, my advice/opinion below is subject to without prejudice basis.

Your housing developer went bankrupt and wound up, leaving the housing project abandoned. In Malaysia, the normal and general possibility that the abandoned housing project can be revived is remote. At the end of the day, you may not get the duly completed house and that you may have to settle the loan that had been advanced to the defaulting abandoned housing developer. Even if you sue the wound up housing developer, this may not help you either. As the remaining funds may not be adequate to compensate you for all the losses you suffer. In this situation, legally, you may apply to the court to lift the corporate veil, requesting the court to order the directors to pay compensation and be liable to you.

On the other hands, you could report to the police for the fraud that the company/director committed. Further, a report should be lodged to KPKT, so that KPKT can take action in accordance with the provisions under the Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Act 1966 (Act 118) against the defaulting directors of the abandoned housing developer company.

In short and by and large in Malaysia, there is no law that governs abandoned housing project, its rehabilitation and that can protect the aggrieved purchasers’ interests today (including obtaining damages and compensation).

As regards your problem (in 2002) on…(the bank) for releasing some percentage of the loan, it is a law that you as the customer has a right to order …(the bank) not to release the loan to the defaulting developer (see Hoo See Sen & Anor v. Public Bank Berhad & Anor [1988] 2 MLJ 170, (Supreme Court)). The act of the bank in releasing the first 10% to the developer, despite your request to them not to do so, was wrong in law and knowing that the project was declared abandoned by KPKT. On this, I think you should provide proof of their negligence and breach of duty as the bank. You should also report this to Bank Negara Malaysia to take action and can sue them for their breach of duty of care/negligence. You may also claim damages/compensation for the losses you suffered.

You are also entitled to get an endorsement and certification from KPKT on your right to have the calculation of the interests of your loan be stopped from the date the housing project has been declared abandoned by KPKT. As regards your right to get back all legal fees and related fees, I think, you have to personally sue the wound up housing developer and by lodging Proof of Debt (POD) to the liquidator and you will become an unsecured creditor who may entitle to the balance moneys that the wound up company left.

In 2013, you said …(the bank) released some loan to the new developer. I cannot imagine, how could the bank release the money to the new developer, if your house has been cancelled for further development? In this case, I think …(the bank) was negligent and breached their duty. You can ask them to cancel the payment made and make a statement that you shall not be liable (to repay/settle the loan) to the wrongful release of that loan to the new developer.

Finally, you are entitled to the requests (waivers) you made to…(the bank). If they still hesitant to entertain your request, you may report to Bank Negara Malaysia for further action. Provide all proof as well.

Before I end this email, I have a question:

Is there any court order regarding the rehabilitation of the project and on the handing over of the project from…(the developer) to the new rehabilitating developer? The court order should provide certain terms as regards the rights of the purchaser to proceed or not to proceed with the rehabilitation, terms that protect the purchasers’ interests etc and the duties of …(the bank).

Good luck

Associate Professor Dr. Nuarrual Hilal Md. Dahlan ACIS, Institute for Governance and Innovation Studies, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Sintok, Kedah Darul Aman.

Isu Gharar Dalam Pembelian Rumah Melalui Bay’ Bithaman al-Ajil (BBA)

Minat dunia Islam untuk menubuhkan Perbankan Islam telah menunjukkan bibit-bibitnya sekitar tahun 1960an dan 1970an kesan daripada semangat kebangkitan Islam pada awal kurun ke-20. Mementum ini pada awalnya telah dipelopori oleh ilmuan-ilmuan Islam Mesir seperti Muhammad Abduh, Rashid Reda, Hassan al-Banna dan Jamaluddin al-afghani. Perbankan Islam telah mula diperkenalkan di Malaysia dengan penubuhan Bank Islam Malaysia Berhad pada tahun 1983. Pembangunan kemudahan pembiayaan Perbankan Islam telah berkembang baik bagi memenuhi keperluan pelanggan awam. Produk-produk perbankan Islam termasuk Bay’ Bithaman al-Ajil (BBA), mudarabah – skim pelaburan deposit umum dan khusus dalam bentuk perkongsian keuntungan antara pendeposit/pelanggan dan pihak bank sebagai pengusaha dan musharakah (perkongsian).Isu projek perumahan terbengkalai memang merupakan isu besar dalam industri perumahan di Malaysia yang masih belum dapat ditangani dan diselesaikan sepenuhnya oleh pihak kerajaan. Terdapat pelbagai sebab yang membawa kepada projek perumahan terbengkalai. Antara tiga(3) sebab utama adalah:

1)  Kegagalan pada pihak kerajaan untuk memperkenalkan secara berkesan konsep ‘bina kemudian jual’ ke atas pemaju perumahan;

2)         Ketiadaan syarat untuk mendapatkan insuran pemajuan perumahan pada pihak pemaju perumahan di Malaysia;

3)  Ketiadaan undang-undang khusus bagi menangani pengurusan pemulihan projek perumahan terbengkalai sehingga selesai sepenuhnya.

Pada pandangan penulis, walaupun dengan kehadiran perbankan Islam di Malaysia, produk-produk perbankan Islam juga tidak menyediakan peruntukan-peruntukan khusus bagi menangani permasalahan projek perumahan terbengkalai dan gagal untuk memberi perlindungan yang sewajarnya kepada para peminjam pembeli rumah. Walhal, prinsip Islam menekankan keadilan, menghindari gharar (ketidakpastian) dan riba.

Apa yang sebenarnya berlaku di dalam produk Bay’ Bithaman al-Ajil (BBA) dalam pembiayaan perumahan Islam adalah seperti berikut:

1)  Pembeli memasuki kontrak jual beli dengan pemaju dan membayar sejumlah deposit, biasanya 10% daripada harga belian;

2)  Pembeli memohon pembiayaan BBA daripada perbankan Islam bagi menampung baki jumlah harga beli yang belum dilunaskan kepada pemaju perumahan.

3)  Perbankan Islam bersetuju untuk membiayai baki jumlah itu dengan syarat pembeli memasuki suatu perjanjian dengan pihak perbankan Islam iaitu perjanjian Perjanjian Pembelian Hartanah – Property Purchase Agreement (PPA). Secara ringkasnya, melalui perjanjian ini, pembeli dikehendaki menjual kepentingan benefisial ke atas hartanah yang dibeli daripada pemaju itu kepada perbankan Islam. Melalui perjanjian ini, pembeli menjadi penjual, manakala perbankan Islam menjadi pembeli akan hartanah tersebut. Selanjutnya, pembeli dikehendaki memasuki suatu lagi perjanjian dengan pihak perbankan Islam iaitu perjanjian Perjanjian Pembelian Hartanah – Property Sale Agreement (PSA).

4)    Dalam PSA ini, pihak perbankan Islam bersetuju untuk menjual semula hartanah benefisial itu kepada pembeli dengan harga yang telah ditetapkan. Biasanya harga ini adalah dua kali ganda daripada harga belian asal hartanah tersebut antara pembeli dan pemaju pada awal tadi. Pembeli dikehendaki membayar secara ansuran jumlah harga belian ini dalam tempoh yang ditetapkan.

Persoalan yang timbul dalam BBA ini adalah:

1)      Apakah peranan perbankan Islam apabila hartanah yang terlibat dalam PPA dan PSA itu menjadi terbengkalai?

2)      Apakah pihak perbankan Islam bertanggungjawab sepenuhnya?

3)  Adakah BBA itu menepati undang-undang Islam yang menekankan keadilan, menjauhi gharar dan riba’?

Apa yang jelas, BBA tidak memberi perlindungan yang sewajarnya kepada para pembeli peminjam. Terdapat banyak kes yang membuktikan perkara ini. Sekiranya projek perumahan terbengkalai, pihak perbankan Islam tidak bertanggungjawab untuk memulihkan projek tersebut, sedangkan di dalam PSA dan PPA secara jelas, bank telah menjadi penjual. Penjual perlu bertanggungjawab bagi memastikan unit rumah yang telah dibeli oleh pembeli peminjam dapat disiapkan sepenuhnya. Apa yang jelas, sekiranya pembeli peminjam gagal untuk melunaskan ansuran bulanan, bank akan mengambil tindakan undang-undang ke atas pembeli peminjam mungkir itu termasuk membankrap pembeli itu. Persoalannya adalah berikut: adakah ini adil? Menurut undang-undang Islam sesuatu transaksi itu mestilah adil, tidak berunsur riba’ dan tidak melibatkan gharar.

Apa yang jelas di dalam BBA terdapat unsur gharar yang dilarang oleh Islam. Gharar di sini bermaksud ketidakpastian tentang kewujudan sesuatu perkara yang telah dipersetujui. Perkara penting dalam sesuatu jual beli rumah adalah unit-unit rumah yang siap sepenuhnya dan sedia diduduki serta boleh didaftarkan ke atas nama pembeli. Di dalam projek perumahan terbengkalai, jelas unit-unit rumah tidak dapat disiapkan oleh penjual (vendor) iaitu Perbankan Islam. Namun perbankan Islam meminta para pembeli peminjam tetap membayar ansuran bulanan yang telah ditetapkan. Bukankah ini merupakan suatu contoh gharar. Sepatutnya, perbankan Islam perlu memastikan unit-unit rumah itu dapat disiapkan sepenuhnya sebelum meminta pembeli peminjam membuat bayaran bulanan.  Maksud siap sepenuhnya itu adalah rumah itu siap menurut kehendak undang-undang – Akta Bangunan Seragam 1984, Akta Jalan, Parit dan Bangunan 1974, memperoleh Sijil Layak Menduduki atau Sijil Siap dan Pematuhan (CCC), bangunan itu sedia untuk diduduki dan hakmilik hartanah itu boleh didaftarkan ke atas nama pembeli.

Bagi mengelakkan daripada terjatuh dalam praktis gharar, penulis berpendapat, perbankan perlu melibatkan diri dalam projek perumahan yang telah siap sepenuhnya. Bukan separuh siap. Sekiranya, perbankan Islam masih lagi mahu  meneruskan praktis melibatkan projek perumahan yang masih belum siap sepenuhnya, terma-terma di dalam BBA perlu meletakkan tanggungjawab ke atas Perbankan Islam selaku pemilik rumah itu untuk memulihkan projek itu sekiranya projek tersebut menjadi terbengkalai, bukan menuding jari menyalahkan pembeli rumah. Secara alternatif, sekiranya projek itu gagal untuk dipulihkan, perbankan Islam perlu sedia untuk memulangkan kembali segala wang yang telah dibayar pembeli. Secara tidak langsung ini memberi keadilan kepada para pembeli dan meletakkan kedudukan di mana Perbankan Islam adalah suatu sistem perbankan yang boleh dipercayai dan adil.

New Email Regarding Grievances of the Abandoned Housing Project’s Purchaser

I received a new email last week.

The email reads as follows:

Salam Tuan Nuarrual Hilal Md. Dahlan ,

I read your weblog. I would like to seek your advise on the following matter. Facts I had a current situation which the facts are briefly layout below :-

(i) Project abandoned;

(ii) Subsequently project revive with appointment of a white knight to take over the development. One of the condition in the revival scheme is that the purchaser is to pay additional top up i.e 25% from the original purchase price;

(iii) Notice on the revival and the top up is issued via letter to registered address of the purchaser and the bank and it is published in the major newspaper in Bahasa Malaysia, English and Chinese.

(iv) If the purchaser fails to adhere to request for the top up the white knight is entitled to redeem the unit from the bank and to resale the unit. (v) Out of those only 4 purchasers have not responded to the white knight, resulting the termination of the SPA.

(vi) The white knight has requested for the redemption statement from the Bank. Current Scenario :- One of the purchaser has turned up and informed the Bank that he is not aware of the revival. The notice on revival does not reach him as it was sent to his previous correspondence address. The Bank have informed him verbally that nothing much that the Bank can do as the unit has been sold. Note, the white knight has sold the unit. Hence, they will not entertain further request from borrower for reinstatement and white knight will refund him a sum of money less the redemption sum. Now the purchaser intent to demand from the Bank the amount that he has paid for 14 years towards the loan.

Question :-

(i) Is the bank at fault of not giving a formal letter to borrower to inform the borrower on the revival and the top up issue?

(ii) Can the bank rely on the notice published by the white knight on the revival conditions? As the notice clearly specified the name of borrower and bank. Thus notice is to both parties.

(iii) What is the remedial action / steps that the bank can take to solve the issue?

(iv) Can the borrower sue the Bank for negligence and demand for full compensation up to the current value of the property?

Hope the above is suffice for you to advise. Looking forward for your advise.

Thank you.


Salam Aid al-Adha

Salam Aid al-Adha


Selamat Menyambut Hari Raya Korban 1434 Hijrah


Profesor Madya Dr. Nuarrual Hilal Md. Dahlan ACIS

Lagi Email Mengenai Nasib Pembeli Projek Perumahan Terbangkalai

Assalamualikum Dr,

Saya dan Isteri ada membeli 2 buah rumah di Daerah Sepang, dan telah terbengkalai 3 tahun lalu. Saya telah memfailkan saman ke atas pemaju dan berjaya ketepikan Perjanjian Jual-beli pada tahun 2012. Masalah berkaitan dengan pinjaman pihak bank belum dapat diselesaikan dan kami telah berhenti membayar kepada mereka dan telahpun di senaraihitam.

Bolehkah Tuan memberi pencerahan dan nasihat berhubung perkara ini, dan kami mahu membersihkan nama kami dari senaraihitam.

Adakah kami boleh menyaman pihak bank di atas kecuaian pihak bank yang tidak menjalankan tugas mereka memastikan rumah disiapkan sebelum memaksa pembeli membayar tunggakan pinjaman?

Terima Kasih.

Yang Benar,


Forum: Isu-isu Perlembagaan Melibatkan Agama Islam



Forum Isu-isu Perlembagaan Melibatkan Agama Islam

Pada 26 Mac, 2013 (Selasa), bertempat di Dewan Seminar B, Pusat Konvensyen, Universiti Utara Malaysia.

Ahli-ahli panel:

1) Professor Datuk Dr. Zainal Kling, Professor UUM Colgis – penceramah pertama

2) Dato’ Hj. Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar – Presiden Persatuan Peguam Muslim Malaysia, penceramah Kedua

3) Dr. Nuarrual Hilal Md Dahlan – Pengarah, Institute for Governance and Innovation Studies, UUM COLGIS, sebagai moderator

Tajuk forum di atas merupakan tajuk biasa dan lama. Namun berdepan dengan pelbagai isu-isu semasa tajuk forum ini masih lagi bersifat ‘evergreen’ dan segar khususnya dalam pembahasan ilmiah, professional and diskusi akademik mutakhir serta relevan dalam menggariskan dasar-dasar Negara.

Ugama Islam telah diletakkan pada kedudukan yang istimewa menurut Perkara 3(1) Perlembagaan Persekutuan. Ianya telah dijadikan agama Persekutuan.

Namun begitu, isu-isu yang timbul sejak akhir-akhir ini yang menggugat kemuliaan dan kesucian Islam itu sendiri.

Menurut ahli forum pertama, Professor Datuk Dr. Zainal Kling, Professor UUMCOLGIS agama Islam telah bertapak di Nusantara dan Kepulauan Melayu sejak abad yang 11. Pada mulanya Islam dianuti oleh komuniti-komuniti kecil hasil dakwah yang dibawa oleh pendakwah Islam Asia Barat dan India. Kemudian Islam telah diterima oleh masyarakat dan negeri-negeri di Nusantara. Pemerintah-pemerintah dan raja-raja Melayu telah memeluk Islam sebagainya contohnya Sultan Malikul Saleh, pemerintah negeri Pasai, Utara Sumatera. Islam telah menjadi suatu agama rasmi empayar-empayar melayu sebermula abad yang ke 13 sehingga ke hari ini, melenyapkan sama sekali pengarah agama Hindu dan Buddha yang telah dianuti sejak zaman berzaman sebelum itu. Walaupun kedatangan pengaruh Portugis, Belanda dan Inggeris yang rakus dengan dasar mereka – God, Gold, Glory, termasuk menyebarkan agama Kristian di kepulauan dan negeri-negeri Melayu, namun, Islam masih lagi dapat bertahan dek menghadapi pengaruh-pengaruh mereka. Pada hemat mantan professor Universiti Malaya ini juga , Portugis dan Belanda hanya menguasai pelabuhan dan ibu negeri Melaka dan beberapa tempat strategik di kepulauan Melayu. Namun begitu, kekuasaan mereka tidak menembusi ke seluruh pelusuk tanah air dan kepulauan Melayu yang lain contohnya di Kedah, Kelantan, Pahang, Terengganu, Johor dan lain-lain. Amalan dan ajaran Islam masih lagi diamalkan dan terlestari daripada satu generasi kepada generasi seterusnya. Mungkin ini disumbangkan oleh kegiatan dan aktiviti dakwah oleh ilmuan dan ulamak Islam yang bertaburan di seluruh pelosok nusantara sebagai contohnya jaringan dakwah yang dijalankan oleh wali Songo di Pulau Jawa, Sumatera, Semenanjung Tanah Melayu dan kepulauan melayu lain, sehingga memungkinkan penghayatan Islam itu dapat terus bertahan.

Keteguhan pengamalan agama Islam ini terencat apabila British melalui dasar imperialism dan kolonialisme menguasai Tanah Melayu dan kepulauan Melayu yang lain. British atau Inggeris telah menguasai pentadbiran dan sosio-ekonomi negeri-negeri Melayu termasuklah memperkenalkan secara paksa pemakaian undang-undang Inggeris bagi mengurus pelaksanaan ekonomi dan sosio-politik mereka. Agama Islam hanya bersifat peribadi penduduk-penduduk yang terbatas dalam konteks kekeluargaan, perwarisan, wakaf, masjid, Baitul Mal dan di bawah kendalian pemerintah-pemerintah Melayu ketika itu. Undang-undang jenayah, komersial, pentadbiran dan undang-undang moden yang lain menggunakan undang-undang Inggeris. Dalam memaksa undang-undang Inggeris ini beberapa set undang-undang yang mengharuskan pemakaian undang-undang mereka ini telah dikuatkuasakan melalui First Charter of Justice, Second Charter of Justice dan Civil Law Ordinance and Enactment.

Apa yang malang menurut mantan penyandang Kursi Tun Abdul Ghaffar Baba UPSI ini, Inggeris hanya memerlukan 70 tahun untuk menguasai falsafah, kebudayaan dan pandangan alam (worldview/epistemology) orang Melayu. Kesannya dasar-dasar kolonialisme and imperialism Inggeris ini juga menjadikan orang Melayu lack of self confidence dan sedikit sebanyak melumpuhkan jatidiri dan semangat juang orang Melayu. Benarlah kata-kata Malek Bennabi:

“Colonialism is responsible for the dearth of the desirable means for developing his talents and material resources, but the unwillingness of the Muslim to utilize the available means, and to exert the required over-effort to raise his standard of life denotes colonisibility.” (Malek Bennabi, Islam in History and Society, 1987, Islamic Research Institute Publications, Islamabad, hlm. 54)

Sepatutnya tempoh malang 70 ini tidak boleh dijadikan alasan bagi orang-orang Melayu untuk bingkas bangun semula meneruskan kesinambungan kegemilangan bangsa Melayu yang telah terbukti kegagahannya sejak 2000 tahun lampau. Semangat juang dan jatidiri orang perlulah digemblengkan bagi memastikan kesinambungan undang-undang dan dasar-dasar Islam yang tidak harus tunduk dengan desakan-desakan yang bersifat peribadi, chauvinistic dan buta sejarah serta budaya yang boleh menjahanamkan kerangka dan penghayatan jasad dan roh Islam itu sendiri.

Ahli panel kedua forum – Dato’ Zainul Rijal Abu Bakar pula membahasakan isu-isu rumit yang timbul dalam beberapa kes undang-undang contohnya kes Nyonya Tahir dan Lina Joy. Kes-kes ini melibatkan isu murtad, isu pertentangan dan pertindihan bidang kuasa Mahkamah Shariah dan Mahkamah Sivil, isu ketidak-seragaman Undang-undang Kekeluargaan Islam, Tatacara Mal, Jenayah Islam dan pentadbiran undang-undang Islam di negeri-negeri di Malaysia. Presiden Persatuan Peguam Muslim Malaysia ini juga menyentuh mengenai deraf bil Hudud Kelantan dan Terengganu yang pada hematnya berlawanan dengan bidang kuasa Persekutuan dan negeri-negeri yang telah ditetapkan dalam Perlembagaan Persekutuan. Pada hemat beliau, bukan semua undang-undang Inggeris yang dilaksanakan pada masa kini berlawanan dengan undang-undang Islam. Terdapat banyak persamaan. Namun, terdapat beberapa peruntukan-peruntukan undang-undang Malaysia yang berlawanan dengan undang-undang Islam. Ini boleh diharmonikan dengan membuat beberapa penyesesuaian dalam kerangka undang-undang sedia ada, contohnya dalam kes pembunuhan, Islam mengenakan hukuman Qisas, tetapi dalam Kanun Kesiksaan sekiranya terbukti pesalah akan dikenakan hukuman bunuh. Namun, terdapat peruntukan di mana Yang Dipertuan Agong boleh memberi ampun ke atas pesalah. Bagi membolehkan undang-undang Islam dapat dilaksanakan Yang Dipertuan Agong boleh mendapatkan kebenaran waris orang yang dibunuh itu bagi mendapatkan maaf dan gantirugi boleh dikenakan ke atas pembunuh tadi.

Antara lain-lain isu yang disentuh oleh Pakar Rujuk Komuniti Shariah Jabatan Peguam Negara ini juga adalah isu yang berkaitan dengan hak asasi manusia, isu pengurusan dan perjawatan Jabatan Kehakiman Shariah dan Jabatan Kehakiman Shariah negeri-negeri, Enakmen Profesyen Peguam Sharie, Isu Kalimah Allah dan isu mengenai The Law Reform Marriage and Divorce Act 1976 melibatkan pasangan Islam.

Forum ini berakhir tepat jam 12.30 tengahari dan dihadiri oleh para pensyarah UUM, staf UUM dan pelajar undang-undang.

E-mail from aggrieved purchasers of an abandoned housing project at Selangor

I received an email from an aggrieved purchaser of an abandoned housing project.  The email reads as follows:


abandoned housing project; company’s liquidation; liquidator; duties and responsibilities of liquidator; false architect certificate; false claims; unlicensed housing developer; bridging loan lender; charge; cause to the contrary; public interest; purchasers’ interests on charged lands; islamic banking; non-conversion of lands; conflict of  interests between the chargee and the purchasers.

Dear Encik Nuarrual,

I read about your areas of expertise and interest from your blog and am writing to appeal for your help to work with us towards achieving a settlement of our abandoned housing scheme.

I am a purchaser of a plot of bungalow land in an abandoned housing project called…, Selangor. I am also the Secretary of …. which comprises over 400 purchasers (and their families) from all five phases of our development.

From 2000 to 2003, over 600 purchasers bought plots of bungalow land from a developer called …., owned and managed by … and his family. In 2004, the developer abandoned the project. End financiers include Bank Rakyat Malaysia (Islamic Banking with, we believe, the largest number of borrowers,…), EON Bank (now HLBB), Ambank, Public Bank, Bank Negara.

The bridging financier, Hong Leong Bank Berhad (HLBB), obtained a Court Order to wind-up the company in 2007. They hold the charge to the developer’s lands (2 Master Titles under which our plots exist, and another 2 Master Titles which was for future development). Their nominated liquidator, A, was appointed by the High Court of Malaya. Since 2006 we have sought the aid of many institutions, in Federal and State Governments, and in the private sector but to no avail.

The developer applied for conversion and sub-division for three phases but did not apply for two phases (our development has five phases). As they did not pay the full premium, the plots in the 3 phases were not converted or sub-divided). The developer gave vacant possession to purchasers who paid 100% of the SPA in one phase and HLBB has given Letters of Disclaimer to many purchasers in the five phases (Bank borrowers and cash purchasers whose redemption sums they received). HLBB informed us that they did not receive the redemption sums for many plots which were purchased for cash.

About 30 members whose redemption sums were not passed to HLBB by the developer made police reports in 2009. We understand that an investigation was carried out by the police and that the police referred the case to the Attorney General’s Chambers. However, our checks with the AG’s Chambers have revealed that the AG’s Chambers have not received the investigation papers from the Royal Malaysian Police although requested by a DPP.

Since 2007, we have been communicating with HLBB and A but somehow both these institutions appear reluctant to find an amicable resolution to our issue. As such, we have been left to resort to our own devices to find a resolution because no one will help us. We decided that doing nothing was not an option for us.

We believe that the developers walked off with about RM50-60 million. In 4 phases, the developer billed purchasers 80% of the SPA price but on the ground, they probably only carried out 20-30% of the work. The banks released the loans, and cash purchasers paid too, based on the schedules of payment stipulated in the SPAs certified by the developer’s engineer.

In 2008, A attempted to sell the undeveloped and unsold lands to a RM2 company at RM1 per sq ft even though at the time we were all in discussion with the Lembaga Perumahan dan Hartanah Selangor on ways to solve the problem. These lands are an asset of the company, the sale proceeds of which could be utilised to rehabilitate our abandoned project. In order to protect our plots and attempt to stop the sale of the lands, about 50 of us placed caveats on the 2 Master Titles on which our plots sit.

In 2009 we learned from the Estate Land Board (ELB) that this development is unlawful in that the developer did not seek the ELB’s permission to convert Estate land into residential land. The Chair of the ELB refused the transfer of the lands and requested A, HLBB and our Group to agree a settlement. However, in August 2011 we were shocked to learn from A that the ELB had agreed to the transfer of the 2 Master Titles which contain the developer’s future phases because we had appealed to the ELB not to agree the transfer until our issue was settled. We strongly felt that if A and HLBB were successful in transferring the lands, they would not reach a settlement with us. The lands have since been transferred to the RM2 company.

A and HLBB told us that they would not work out a settlement. We responded that our Group would find a way out. Following a long period of negotiation, in July 2010, HLBB and our Group agreed that HLBB would sell to a white knight (WK) the unsold plots and the undeveloped lands for a total of about RM9.5million. The arrangement would also include giving the white knight the “rights” to the … scheme so that any unpaid balance would be payable by the existing purchasers to the white knight.

HLBB also agreed to waive the redemption sum paid by cash purchasers to the Developer but which was not passed to them as Chargee Bank. The amount of this was estimated at RM 9 million. In return for this purchase the white knight would be obliged to rehabilitate the existing 627 sold plots without any additional charge to the existing purchasers. In addition, the proposed new arrangements would be submitted for sanction by the High Court under Section 176 of the Companies Act 1965.

On that basis, we searched for a white knight. After many discussions with a number of WKs, and by the deadline of early September 2011 set by A, only one WK emerged. They submitted their proposal in accordance with the terms set out by HLBB. However, A informed us that they would have to forward the proposal to HLBB for consideration. Then all became silent. It was only after we appealed to Bank Negara and with their intervention, we understand, HLBB agreed (after 4 months) to accept the proposal.

This WK was introduced to us by Bank Rakyat (BR) as we have been keeping BR informed of all our efforts. We had expected BR to provide a loan to the WK to rehabilitate our project but they declined. Since then, the WK embarked on a search for investors, developers, financiers. Initially, these parties showed a lot of interest but at the last minute, they all declined. While the search was going on, the WK was in discussion with A and their lawyer on the terms and conditions of the sale and purchase of all the lands and our development, and the Scheme of Arrangement under S176.

HLBB set a final deadline for the signing of the SPA on 17 August 2012. Although this deadline was a result of 3 postponements, these postponements were not entirely due to our WK. The T&C of the SPA could not be agreed so postponements were required.

On 13 August, A set up a meeting with our Pro Tem Committee. At that meeting, A informed us that each purchaser in our Group has to pay them a verification fee of RM500 but our Group has to do all the work. Purchasers outside our Group would have to pay 2% of the SPA price.

We asked A why this meeting was held just 4 days before the signing of the SPA when, for many months, we wrote several letters to them asking for a meeting so we could discuss the issue and inform our members early. We felt under pressure as A’s demand did not give us time to negotiate nor consult our members. In fact, we think A expected us to agree as the Liquidator allocated 20 minutes only for this meeting. He left early and his colleagues continued because we refused to agree as we had queries.

After the meeting members who attended had questions and comments so we wrote to A the following day to ask them to put their request in writing (and to reply to our queries/comments as we envisaged other members asking the same questions) so that we could circulate to members for their views. However, we did not get a response. Our questions are still unanswered. Even if we wanted to cooperate, A has not told us the level of work it wants us to carry out nor whether we have to make any more additional payments.

We also do not have the answer to our question as to the source of law that stipulates we have to pay a verification fee. A has our files from the developer, a list of purchasers filed with the High Court, and conducted a Proof of Debt exercise in 2009. A is demanding our list of members and their contact details before they will give us the letter we requested for members. We are unable to understand this stance. Sometime in 2008 A said that they are Officers of the Court and threatened to obtain a Court Order to compel us to give them our list of members’ contact details. We declined.

On the deadline of 17 August, our WK did not sign the SPA because they were concerned that if purchasers did not pay the verification fee, they would not be admitted to vote for the Scheme of Arrangement. As a result, there would be no scheme and no deal. It is worthwhile mentioning here that A would get more than RM500,000 from purchasers and a substantial non-refundable amount of RM250,000 from the WK.

We have been meeting with the Jabatan Insolvency in Putrajaya over the issue of the liquidation process and the hardships it is causing all of us. However, Officers we have met say that they are unable to do much. Control lies with the Prime Minister, it seems, who has the power to issue and terminate Liquidators’ licences. The other option is the Court. It appears to us that there does not seem to be a written Code of Ethics for liquidators.

We understand that JIM has taken A to Court on this verification fee issue (it seems other liquidators are imposing the charge too) on behalf of purchasers in another scheme but we do not know if there is a decision. From our experience, the Heads of the relevant Departments in JIM do not stay long enough to make substantial changes or improvements to the system.

Despite the deadline, the WK and our Group have continued to look for parties to help us with the rehabilitation. HLBB and A were informed about this in writing. A few days ago, the WK secured a public listed company whose Main Board agreed, in principle, to take on the deal. Our happiness was short-lived.

HLBB was informed about this in writing and personally, but we were told to deal directly with A. A was also informed in writing but remained silent. A few days later, A wrote to our WK that A is at liberty to sell the unsold and undeveloped lands to any third party (without considering the rehabilitation) because our WK’s time has lapsed. If this happens, we can be sure that we will not be able to get our project out of the abandoned status. A may then take us through the liquidation process where we lose our plots and our money. During the Proof of Debt exercise all of us nominated to hold on to the beneficial interest in our plots and not exchange it for money. Through the years, we feel we have and are being bounced between A and HLBB.

Needless to say, most of us purchased our plots from the developer not only because we wanted to live in Batang Kali but also because we relied heavily on the good reputation and creditability of Hong Leong Bank Berhad as Bridging Financier, and Bank Rakyat and Ambank as the End Financiers. That we would not have any concerns about the development being completed. Alas, that is not the reality.

Most of our members are retirees who spent their savings to buy their plots, and still have no home. Some are young families who are repaying their bank loans but still have no home. Some have passed away and their children now attend our meetings. This episode has caused a lot of pain and suffering. The Court appointed Officer, A, does not appear to want to collaborate to arrive at a fair and just resolution for all parties.

We have invested six years of our lives in trying to obtain what is rightfully ours, and fairness and justice for all our members and their families. We have done all our own research and our own negotiations, and have persevered. However, success seems to elude us because we are not on a level playing field. We have tried to find an amicable solution, out of Court, because we know that A and HLBB have deep pockets which can keep us all in Court for many years. We have no real access to justice.

I hope you will consider our case and let me know if you are able to advise us on our options under the Malaysian legal system so that we can form an action plan to pursue our goal. If we are successful, we may be the first abandoned scheme that has depended totally on self-help. There is much to assimilate in all this, not surprisingly after a period of 6 years of the liquidation process. If you are interested to explore the … case a little further, I would be pleased to arrange a meeting between you and our Pro Tem Committee. We are aware that there are a large number of abandoned projects and perhaps this will inspire and motivate purchasers in other schemes.

Many thanks for reading my note. I look forward to hearing from you.

 Best wishes,


Perbankan Islam Diminta Lebih Berperikemanusiaan Terhadap Pembeli Rumah Terbengkalai

BERNAMA – Sunday, October 14, 2012

From: (accessed 18 October, 2012)

Berita Terkini

KUALA LUMPUR, 14 Okt (Bernama) — Pihak Perbankan Islam di negara ini diminta untuk lebih berperikemanusiaan kepada pembeli rumah terbengkalai supaya tidak terbeban dengan hutang yang berisiko menjadi muflis.

Ketua Biro Pemantau Perkhidmatan Kewangan Persatuan Pengguna Islam Malaysia (PPIM) Sheikh Abdul Kareem Said Khadaied berkata pihaknya mendapati terdapat banyak kes pembeli menghadapi kes mahkamah yang difailkan pihak perbankan Islam itu bagi menuntut bayaran balik dengan kadar tinggi biarpun rumah tidak siap.

Beliau berkata demikian dalam Forum Pengguna 2012 bertajuk “Perbankan Islam Hanya Pada Nama?” di sini.

Aktivis PPIM Shirazdeen Adam Shah bertindak sebagai moderator forum itu manakala Ketua Bahagian Syariah Bank Islam Malaysia Berhad Ustaz Mohd Nadzri Chik sebagai panel kedua dan bekas Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif (CEO) Bank Muamalat Malaysia Bhd Datuk Abdul Manap Abdul Wahab menjadi panel keempat.

Sheikh Abdul Kareem yang juga panel ketiga forum itu berkata sebagai sebuah entiti yang berlandaskan syariah, pihak bank wajar memikirkan masalah yang dihadapi pengguna Islam yang mana pegawai-pegawai bank tersebut disaran menggunakan budi bicara dalam usaha membantu pembeli Islam meringankan beban mereka.

Sementara itu, panel pertama yang juga Pengarah Institut Kajian Tadbir dan Inovasi Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) Dr Nuarrual Hilal Md Dahlan berkata Bank Negara perlu memperbaiki sistem Perbankan Islam di seluruh negara supaya dapat memberi manfaat kepada rakyat terutama dalam hal tanggungan hutang akibat rumah terbengkalai.

Katanya, kerajaan juga perlu mewajibkan semua pemaju swasta menyiapkan rumah terlebih dahulu yang kemudiannya baru menjalankan operasi jualan termasuk memperkenal insurans jaminan kepada pembeli untuk menyelamatkan diri daripada dibelenggu isu itu.

Di samping itu, Dr Nuarrual Hilal juga menyarankan bakal pembeli rumah membuat pembelian daripada pemaju kerajaan bagi mengelakkan risiko muflis akibat menanggung hutang bank kerana projek perumahan terbengkalai.

Beliau berkata sekiranya golongan itu membeli rumah daripada kerajaan seperti Syarikat Perumahan Nasional Berhad (SPNB) ia lebih memberi jaminan dari aspek modal yang membolehkan rumah siap berdasarkan jadual ditetapkan.