Man who converts home into temple annoys residents
Mon, Jul 19, 2010
New Straits Times

KUALA LUMPUR - Close to 80 residents living in the neighbourhood of Jalan Api Api Lima in Kepong protested yesterday over a house which had been converted into a Chinese temple

They called for the temple to be moved to a more suitable location.

The residents claimed that the house owner converted his home early this year, fixed a large urn in the middle of the drive-way and filled his home with prayer paraphernalia.

The residents complained that devotees who visited the temple burned joss sticks and prayer notes, and chanted from 10pm to 6am the following morning.

Shirley Tan, 50 who lives next to the temple said repeated complaints had been lodged at City Hall and the Public Complaints Bureau, but no action was taken.

"City Hall officers came a few times to check the house and take pictures but nothing else was done.

"It is difficult for me and my family to live like this. Nearly every day my house is filled with smoke from the burning of joss sticks and prayer notes.

"We can't sleep with the chanting that goes on until the wee hours of the morning," she said.

Tan said it gets worse during the new moon and full moon days, when a large crowd comes for prayer sessions.

"More than 20 people would gather and park their cars all over the place, " she said.

"I was so frustrated I tried to sell my house, but no one is interested to buy, " she said.

MCA Kepong Community Service Centre Head Yee Poh Ping said he met the owner in May and the owner agreed to shift his temple in June after a Chinese festival.

"He said he was going to move out at the end June, but nothing has happened."

Yee said the residents are planning to hold a peaceful protest at City Hall headquarters in two weeks if the problem is not solved.

City Hall has acknowledged receiving complaints but has yet to act on them.

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