Gov’t considers new laws to solve water seepage problems


The local government is considering establishing new laws to solve water seepage problems, according to Secretary for Administration and Justice André Cheong.
During yesterday’s Legislative Assembly (AL) plenary meeting, several lawmakers proposed that the government establish laws to grant the relevant authorities the power to enter private homes to handle water seepage problems.
Lawmakers, including Au Kam San and Zheng Anting, generally believe that water seepage problems will be solved more effectively if the government authority has the rights necessary to enter private homes and conduct inspections.
The lawmakers think that because this is currently not possible, homeowners will not open their doors for an inspection. This could result in problematic housing units avoiding punishment, thus perpetuating the water seepage problem.
Replying to the lawmakers, Cheong said that the Macau SAR government is already considering establishing a specific law to manage water seepage issues.
According to Cheong, the local government is not inclined to consent to the lawmakers’ proposal, however.
“It should not be the government doing the work; water seepage should be a market issue,” said Cheong, indicating that the problem is better solved through non-government methods.
The secretary said that, in many cases, homeowners had refused to let third parties enter their houses to inspect the water seepage problems because these individuals had frequently violated the law by remodeling their houses, creating the problem in the first place. In this situation, these individuals would not wish to have their house inspected since they may have already broken the law.
Cheong explained that, at present, if the owners of the units do not cooperate or cannot be contacted, the owners of the units affected by the water seepage problems can initiate judicial or arbitration procedures and require the occupants to open their doors.

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