Architect’s Certification: A Problem?
AbstractCurrently the problems of some architects issuing fraudulent progress certificates for Malaysia’s housing projects result in many house buyers losing their life savings. Unfortunately, these house buyers still remain contractually responsible for all the associated, present and future financial obligations such as their bank loans. Fraudulent certification is the most frequent incident of complaints amongst the range of problems complained about to the Board of Architects, Malaysia or Lembaga Arkitek Malaysia (LAM). This paper highlights the underlying pertinent issues such as when an architect does not fully understand the ramifications, or exercise due care when performing the certifier’s role with its inherent responsibilities under the Housing Development Act (HDA) and Housing Development Regulations (HDR). Also at what stage the architect is legally required to issue progressive work completion certificates, particularly the scope ranging from the inception stage through to the completion stage. This includes the relevant housing laws and regulations that enshrine the architects’ professional status and confers legal certification duties. This is designed to protect the public interest, yet many architects fail to perform this duty inde-pendently, or impartially and fairly to the new house buyers and the public at-large. Recognizing the systemic weakness, the elements that contribute to the fraudulent certification and illustrates how the fraudulent certification exploits the trust of house buyers. In the analysis, a quantitative framework was used to measure, quantify and discuss the best all round outcomes.
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