Bahrain project delay lawsuit planned
Manama, January 24, 2011
Property owners at a stalled residential project in Bahrain could take the developer to court in a bid to end their long-running nightmare.
The Marina West Owners Group has submitted a letter to the Crown Prince's Court seeking government intervention following major delays in completing the project.
With the case being investigated, the group claims some members are now considering individual suits against Marina West.
In a letter to our sister newspaper Gulf Daily News (GDN), the group maintained it was keen to reach an amicable solution - but warned that legal action was now on the cards.
'We are pressing for an amicable and firm solution with government intervention,' the letter reads.
'We are asking for an audit of the project finances and an agreement that satisfies the home buyers.
'Almost all buyers are supporting the planned actions. Several lawyers and business executives are providing professional advice.
'Should we fail to achieve an acceptable and timely solution, a group is planning to file a suit against Marina West to recoup their investments plus damages, plus legal and court expenses.
'They (property buyers) have a Bahraini lawyer who advised in December to wait for two events: (a) the passing of December 31, 2010, which is the official final extended delivery deadline that Marina West has breached, and (b) a response from the Crown Prince's Court.'
The group says work at the 350,000sqm Budaiya site came to a standstill last March and, despite lengthy discussions between management, owners and lawyers, a solution to get the project back up and running has yet to be found.
In a draft of the letter, which gathered more than 120 signatures, the owners also appealed to the government to persuade the developers to accept one of several proposals made to resolve their financial and management troubles.
The group, which includes Bahraini, Saudi, British, Lebanese, American and Irish nationals, was supposed to receive keys to their apartments by the end of last month, but is still awaiting an update from the company.
In a letter to owners in October, Marina West warned of delays in handing over homes due to ongoing talks about financing. Buyers were told that developers were having difficulty raising the funds needed to finish the project. Since then, Marina West chief executive Mahmood Janahi told the GDN the company was making all efforts to find acceptable solutions to minimise the effects of the impasse. He said the company expected to announce the 'successful completion of financial dealings' by the end of last month. However, no announcement has been forthcoming.
The $750 million (BD283.5 million) project consists of more than 1,000 residential flats and a five-star hotel across 11 towers. Around 60 per cent apartments have been sold.
Marina West officials were unavailable for comment.-TradeArabia News Service
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