It's like 'living in a horror house', say terrorised Toa Payoh neighbours

It's like 'living in a horror house', say terrorised Toa Payoh neighbours

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The neighbour has allegedly destroyed the wall along the corridor. (Photo: Fann Sim)

SINGAPORE: Some days, she would find grains of salt and ashes on the front door and windows of her two-room flat in Block 55, Toa Payoh Lorong 5. On other days, she would find her laundry drenched in oil.

Mdm Lau Yoong Kin believes the culprit is her next-door neighbour, a woman in her 60s. She said she and her husband have been tolerating their neighbour's antics for the past 10 years.

"It's like living in a horror house ... is this fit for human living?" said the 78-year-old retiree. 

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Mdm Lau said that while she's not fearful of living next to her neighbour, it has been difficult "putting up with her antics". (Photo: Fann Sim)

Pictures of the damage the woman allegedly caused to her common corridor have been making the rounds on social media.

When Channel NewsAsia visited the unit, the paint on the walls of the corridor had peeled off, exposing cement and brick at some parts. The floor was also damaged and uneven. 

"Sometimes, she'll have some liquid that smells like urine and she splashes that too," Mdm Lau said, adding that her own front door has corroded from daily exposure to water and salt. 

"We want to move out, but we cannot because we're not mobile," she added. "My husband just suffered a stroke and he cannot move much." 

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Her husband Yip Cheong Siew, 80, has to dust the windows facing the corridor twice every day to get rid of incense ashes. (Photo: Fann Sim)

Her husband said the neighbour's older brother visited them two to three years ago to "ask for tolerance and forgiveness" for his sister's behaviour.

"He asked us to have kindness and to forgive her, but I told him to find a solution because his sister had been like this for many years," he said. 

"He came again earlier today (Jan 7) to say the same thing after seeing the stories online," he added. 

Mdm Lau and her husband are not the only ones affected by their neighbour's alleged antics. 

Other neighbours Channel NewsAsia spoke with said the woman engages in daily "shouting sessions" in the morning, afternoon and evening. 

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The door's frame and paint is corroded and worn out. (Photo: Fann Sim)

One neighbour who would only give her name as Ms Wong said the shouting has been going on for years, each time lasting up to 30 minutes. Other neighbours said she would stand and walk along the corridor to face the block opposite theirs and shout at it. 

"I cannot make out what she shouts about. Sometimes she says 'Ah Choo ah' and there are a lot of curse words in Hokkien and Cantonese," she said. 

Another resident, Ms Theresa Kok, said: "Every morning at 7am she will start her nonsense. All the four-letter words. She always says the 13th floor, next block, has a person called Ah Choo. She says her husband had a girlfriend there."

Mdm Lau recalled one incident when she confronted her neighbour for spilling oil on her doorstep, and she became aggressive, throwing several cans of air freshener at the retiree. According to Mdm Lau, the police came and took her away, but she was back at her unit the next day.

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Another view of the battered-looking corridor. (Photo: Fann Sim)

Mdm Lau and Ms Wong said they have reported their neighbour to the police, but her antics have persisted.

"I called the police because she was right outside my flat when I needed to go to work in the morning. And the police said that I wasn't the first to call and report about her. They just gave her a warning and left," said Ms Wong, who has been living there for more than 30 years. 

"When we ask her about the ashes and the salt, she will say it's the other neighbours (Mdm Lau and her husband) who did it. But she was doing this even before they moved in 12 years ago," Ms Wong added. 

Responding to media queries, the Bishan-Toa Payoh Town Council issued a statement to say that various ground agencies are aware of the resident's "irregular behaviour" and have been working together to help resolve the matter. 

It said grassroots leaders had previously visited the unit and confirmed that the resident was scrubbing walls with salt, vinegar and baking powder to "get rid of spirits". Repairs were even carried out, but the woman's behaviour persisted. 


The town council said relocating the couple "would not solve the primary problem", but assured that "alternate housing arrangements" were being planned for when the resident's behaviour does not improve with treatment. 

Channel NewsAsia has reached out to the Singapore Police Force for comments. 

Source: CNA/fs/hs

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