Published on: Friday, May 23, 2014
Kota Kinabalu: Emotions ran high at the Consumer Claims Tribunal on Thursday when two couples almost had a bust-up with their respective respondents after their hearings here.
The court's bailiff had to be called to the scene to calm the disputing parties on both incidents which happened immediately after the parties stepped out of the court.
In the first case, the claimant Alinah Budin told the court's President Datuk Lawrence Thien that the respondent, Mohd Nasir Ismail, had failed to complete the renovation to her house even though Nasir had been given almost two years to carry out the work.
Alinah, who is based in Tawau, said she first paid Nasir, who is also a public servant, in 2012 a total of RM4,500 as a down-payment to renovate her house before paying additional payments amounting to RM15,000 out of the total renovation value of RM17,155.
"However, he had failed to give me any receipt except for the down-payment or furnish me with evidence of progress as promised.
He also did not answer or return our calls. We were aware this is his first job so we just wanted to help and give him the chance as he is also our friend.
"Imagine our surprise when we came back from Tawau for school holidays to find our house in tatters. We don't have roofs, the work was badly done although he had specifically asked for money to buy roofs.
"And later he gave me a copy of a police report with another quotation attached, a quotation which we have never received," she said.
The work on the house had since been stopped pending the court's hearing.
The claimant is requesting for RM7,165 based on the incomplete work.
The respondent disputed the claim saying all the listed details forwarded by the claimant are already 80 per cent completed.
He also said he had done additional works on the house even though those were not in the original quotation because he believed he will be paid anyway.
Thien, in his ruling, said he could not determine the truth based on both parties' testimonies and told them to come up with reports that are certified by expert witnesses such as an architect or an engineer.
The hearing was adjourned to next tribunal hearing next month.
The claimant and her husband, who left the room immediately after the hearing, were later followed by the respondent who left with his wife before a small altercation broke out outside the tribunal office.
The second case involved one Majra Samarin who accused a respondent known only as Chang of Kedai Letrik Yee Seng of overcharging her after she sent her Akira television for repair at the shop in July last year.
Majra said she paid RM60 as down-payment for the repair and came back for the TV in February only to be told by Chang that he has sold her TV.
However, the next day, Chang called her again to say that her TV is in fact still in the shop and asked her to collect it.
"When I went there, I was served a bill amounting to more than RM1,000.
Other than the cost of the repair, he also included many other items including compensation for his car tyres, fuel, even the food he ate in coffee shops he wanted to claim from me because he said he had to go to Kolombong to get the parts!
"Maybe he thought because I'm poor he can make a fool of me," she said.
However, when it was Chang's turn to respond, he denied the allegation tearfully and told Thien that he only asked for RM250.
Majra shot back at him, telling him not to cry in the courtroom.
Thien later ordered Majra to pay RM190 to Chang for the return of her TV.
Chang and Majra's enraged husband later were involved in a war of words inside the tribunal office after the latter threatened that Chang is going to "get it soon".
The presence of the court's bailiff, however, managed to bring order to the situation.