COUNTRY GARDEN DANGA BAY SDN BHD v. TRIBUNAL TUNTUTAN PEMBELI RUMAH & ANOR

[2022] 5 MLRA 38

COUNTRY GARDEN DANGA BAY SDN BHD v. TRIBUNAL TUNTUTAN PEMBELI RUMAH & ANOR
Federal Court, Putrajaya
Zaleha Yusof, Zabariah Mohd Yusof, Rhodzariah Bujang FCJJ
[Civil Appeal No: 01(f)-17-07-2020(J)]
14 April 2022

JUDGMENT

Zaleha Yusof FCJ:

Introduction

[1] This appeal before us relates to the following questions of law for which leave was granted on 6 July 2020:

Question 1

Whether Section 16N(2) of the Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Act 1966 (the Act) precludes the Tribunal for Homebuyer Claims (hereafter called the Tribunal) from exercising jurisdiction over a claim which is not based upon an express term of the Sale & Purchase Agreement (the SPA) or its specifications but is a claim based on the homebuyer's expectations of the unit purchased corresponding in all respects with a display model at the developer's showroom?;

Question 2

Whether the power conferred on the Tribunal under s 16Y(2)(e) of the Act to "vary or set aside" the contract confers a jurisdiction on the Tribunal to add specifications of its own to the unit purchased by the homebuyer to include a sheltered/covered balcony, which is not provided for in the SPA, and to award damages in lieu thereof, or whether the said jurisdiction is properly exercisable only to ensure that the terms of the contract are in compliance with Schedule H of the Act?;

Question 3

Whether the homebuyer's claim that he has been allotted the wrong unit by the developer is maintainable after he has inspected and taken possession of and renovated the premises or whether by the law of estoppel and acquiescence, he is precluded from maintaining any such claim? and

Question 4

Whether a breach of natural justice occurred when the housing developer's representative at the proceedings was allotted only 15 minutes to respond to the homebuyer's allegation, made without prior notice, that his SPA was unilaterally altered and the date changed?; in the circumstances whether the Tribunal proceedings had miscarried given that legal representation is disallowed under s 16U(2) of the Act, and the fact that the Tribunal had in the end adopted and acted upon the extraneous material to make its award?

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