Memorial Park’s 16-year wait over
Published on: Monday, May 20, 2019
By: Jo Ann Mool

KOTA KINABALU: The Empire Paradise Christian Memorial Park will open for business soon after a 16-year legal tussle. A joint venture project between Empire Treasure Club Sdn Bhd and the land owner, Empire Treasure Sdn Bhd, on 2.1 acres adjacent to the existing Roman Catholic Cemetery in Taman Century Baru bordering Taman Dixon, it is believed to be the last Christian memorial park approved within the city’s perimeter.

The developer’s Managing Director, Tan Guan Soon, said there were some misconceptions by the general public on the development of the Empire Paradise Christian Memorial Park. 

“They thought that approval for this project had been withdrawn by the relevant authority due to strong protest by nearby residents many years ago and also the legal tussle between the landowner and the bank, which caused a halt on the project for so many years,” Tan said at a press conference at the developer’s office.

“As new shareholders taking over management of the developer’s company, we would like to take this opportunity to clarify that all the approvals by the respective authorities are still valid and there is no more legal tussle between the landowner and the bank.

“Interested purchasers and investors are welcome to purchase or invest in our burial lots now,” he said.

“This Memorial Park hit the headlines at the early stage of its development in 2001, after nearby residents strongly protested against it, as the access road approved by the relevant authority then had to pass through their housing estate.

“This eventually led to a halt on the development, followed by a 16-year legal tussle between the landowner and the bank that granted financial facilities for the development,” said Tan.

He said the development resumed after management of the developer was taken over by new shareholders and subsequently, in February 2017, when the Kota Kinabalu High Court ruled in favour of the landowner and the developer. 

The new developer then negotiated with the bank and reached a settlement agreement on the landowner’s outstanding banking facilities, he added.

“As for the access road issue which nearby residents strongly protested, this too had been resolved by the relevant authority in allowing the developer to use the existing access road which is currently used by the Roman Catholic Cemetery. 

“The new developer has now fully paid up the agreed Full and Final Settlement Sum to the bank, so there is no more issue on the landowner’s outstanding financial facilities with the bank,” he said.

Tan added that the development of the Memorial Park is based on eco-friendly concept that has been tested and proven to work well in other foreign countries, with emphasis on greening of the surrounding environment to enhance both its ecology and aesthetic value.

“No chemical fertiliser is allowed, only organic fertiliser will be used for the grass and flowers. The burial system is also designed to protect the local water sources, both surface and ground,” he said.

To enhance the value of the burial lots in the Memorial Park, the new developer has made some amendments to the approved Development Plan, added Tan.

“A road has been constructed for the hearse and accompanying vehicles to have direct access to the burial ground in the Memorial Park. 

“Also, 162 burial lots under Zone 4 of the development had been converted into parking spaces for convenience of our valued purchasers and guests.” 

Tan said once completed, the Memorial Park will have 872 burial lots comprising Above-Ground (Tomb-type) burial lots, Single and Double ln-Ground burial lots. To date, 220 lots in Zone 1 and 98 lots in Zone 3 have been completed and available for booking by Christians of all denominations. 

“Response from the Christian community and investors is very encouraging. To date 110 lots have been taken up and so far two burial lots had already been occupied recently. 

“We provide year-round maintenance for all the facilities in the Memorial Park. For sale of every burial lot, RM3,000 will be set aside from the purchase price for the Lifetime Maintenance Fund.

“For this purpose, an established local church will be appointed to manage the fund and undertake to upkeep year-round maintenance works of the Memorial Park. Besides, 24-hour surveillance is also provided to prevent desecration and vandalism within the Memorial Park,” he said.

Tan said they expect to officially launch the memorial park soon, which is after the Hari Raya celebration.

In conjunction with the official launch, the company would be giving special promotional offers.

“The Empire Paradise Christian Memorial Park is a small memorial park. We developed this Memorial Park to provide another choice of resting place for Christians living in the City’s perimeters,” he said.

During the promotion period, the company would be donating RM1,000 for every lot purchased to the purchaser’s church, he said.

Also present was the land owner, Jeffrey Wong.



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