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Registering RAs not that difficult a task

26/05/2009 The Star By OH ING YEEN

IN recent years, many residents associations (RA) have been formed as more people realise the need for a unified body to represent the community and decide on issues pertaining to the neighbourhood.

However, some of these RAs are still only pro tem committees as they have either not realised the importance of getting registered or simply do not know the right procedures. There are even cases of two or more RAs situated just a few streets apart in the same neighbourhood.

With the increasing number of RAs hiring security guards, it is also important for RAs to have their accounts audited so that they can provide proof that the money collected from residents is spent in the right manner.

In 1994, it took USJ RA founder Joseph Xavier four months of paper work and travelling to and from the office of the Registrar of Societies (ROS) to have the RA registered.

Seeds of an idea: Many RAs begin with informal meetings among the residents.

“We formed the pro tem committee in 1992 and we were among the pioneer residents in USJ back then.

“I had some experience with RAs as I had been a member while I was staying in PJ. We had the support from the residents and the help of the developer who donated a piece of land for us to have a place to hold our meetings.

“We submitted the required details in Bahasa Malaysia to the ROS, such as the name, logo and constituency of our RA. We even had to explain the meaning of our logo.

“It is also important to submit our annual meeting agenda to the ROS yearly. In 1994, we were finally recognised as a legal association. The membership grew from 10 to more than 400 people now,” he said.

Having been a RA founder and chairman and now a residents comittee (JKP) chairman, what does he think are the differences between the RA, the JKP and the Rukun Tetangga (RT)?

“The RTs receive funds from the government, the JKP is given allocations by the council but RAs have to raise their own funds.

“Now, it is easier for the residents to voice out issues affecting them as they can speak to the JKP zone chairmen, who are also municipal councillors, instead of going to the council,” he said.

“The JKPs will also provide a helping hand if the RA needs to raise funds.

“Those who want to learn how to form an RA can attend the JKP meetings and approach the JKP for help.

“Some RAs don’t understand the concept of the JKP despite the briefings as some don’t bother to turn up.”

He stressed that being part of a residents association required some sacrifices.

“Some even asked what they can get in return for joining the RA. It’s not about what you can get out of it but what you can give to the community,” he said.

All-Petaling Jaya Selangor, Residents Associations Coalition (APAC) chairman Liew Wei Beng said it was not difficult to get registered now, provided that the right steps were followed.

“Being a registered organisation gives the RA a legal platform and it is also recognised by the local council.

“You have to prepare your own constitution but you can write it in English.

“There are a few criteria such as you must be a Malaysian citizen above 21 without a criminal record and you can’t be a bankrupt,” he said.


How to form a legal RA

1) The founding meeting should be attended by at least seven members and their names have to be included in the meeting minutes.

2) The members have to:-

– agree on the formation of the association;

– agree on the name of association;

– decide on the association’s registered address;

– elect the sponsoring committee members to handle the registration for the association;

– approve the constitution and regulations of the association; and

– jot down the minutes of the meeting, including the motions above.

For more information on how to get a pro tem committee registered, call 03-8886 3295/ 603-8886 3296, visit, or email

The ROS is located at Aras 5, Blok D2, Kompleks D, Pusat Pentadbiran Kerajaan Persekutuan, 62546 Putrajaya.

Information sourced from the ROS website.


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