IT was a very quiet weekend at Kampung Rimba Jaya in Shah Alam as the D-Day passed without any incident last Friday, with most of the remaining squatter families having moved out.
The last batch of 174 families had been ordered to vacate the land owned by a private company after their petition against an eviction notice given to them two years ago by the Shah Alam City Council (MBSA) was dismissed by the the High Court on Oct 3 this year.
They were ordered to move out by last Friday. The developer has said that the illegal houses would be demolished anytime after that date.
During the latest check on the squatter colony by StarMetro yesterday, some 50 families were seen to be still around. Nearly 20 of the families have already moved out their belongings but were still staying in their old houses.
The 30 other families have apparently decided to defy the order to move out. They are still harbouring hope of getting compensation or alternative accommodation from the authorities or the developer.
The 174 families were part of the original 1,074 households who had lived in the squatter colony for the past 30 years. About 800 families had moved out to temporary houses provided by the developer at Kampung Hicom after they were served with eviction notice two years ago.
The 174 families, however, had rejected the company's offer and continued to stay on. They took the case to court that ended on Oct 3 when the court ruled that it was unlawful for them to remain on the land. Soon after that, the developer served them an eviction order to leave by last Friday.
“We are not fighting the authorities. We remain here as we do not have a place to go. My wife and I are old and we still have three school-going children to feed and we did not have any other option than to continue to stay here,” said Jalal Mohamad.
Jalal, 60, and his wife Ramlah Eiran, 55, are a sorry sight of gloom as they sat outside the porch of their 30-year-old house.
Due to their old age, he said, it was impossible for them to secure bank loans for the low-cost house offered by the government.
R. Ayasamy, 58, said the future was bleak for his family and others who would have no place to stay after being forced out.
Ayasamy said he had been staying in the house he built more than 25 years ago and he had not expected this to happen.
“We are unable to rent any house in the neighbourhood as most of the houses have been rented by those who had moved out earlier,” he said, adding that both he and wife M Sivakammy, 50, were not working.
A check by StarMetro found that most of those who had left had moved into houses in the neighbouring villages at Padang Jawa.
With the rising demand for houses, the check also reveal that the rental of houses at these villages had hit the ceiling with some of the houses going for RM800 rental per month.
“Some of the families have been sharing houses due to the high rental and lack of houses in the area. Most are looking for houses around these area because their children are schooling around here and they are familiar with the area,” said Sahari Kadir, 40, who was still staying put in his house with his wife and three children.