RELATIONS between neighbours are being strained by the Government's inability to settle housing problems, angry pensioners said yesterday. More than 100 people marched to Government House in a demonstration marking World Habitat Day, and demanded an immediate review of housing policies. Since 1985, the United Nations has observed October 1 as a day to urge governments to help fund accommodation for their citizens. Yung Wai-mui, spokesman for the Society for Community Organisations (SOCO), said yesterday's theme, 'Our Neighbourhood', fitted the problems of Hong Kong where these ties were at risk. 'Rising rent and increasingly congested living conditions have put pressure on people, and this puts a lot of stress on the relations with their neighbours,' said Ms Yung. 'Many social problems are emerging because the rights of many people to proper housing cannot be secured. 'The Government should consider drafting legislation to protect the housing rights of the people.' Ms Yung said about 1.5 million people in Hong Kong, such as cagehome tenants and new immigrants in crowded apartments, live in deprived conditions. SOCO's statistics showed there were 150,000 families on the waiting list for public housing, some of whom had been waiting for 10 years. One of the major problems of the lack of public housing was the trouble which often ensued when pensioners were ordered to share flats with strangers. There have been several incidences of old people in shared flats turning to violence after arguments. Chiu Ki-yuk, 85, lives with another aged man in a flat in the Tsz Man Estate in Tsz Wan Shan. 'We have arguments over everything - the use of the washroom, the use of the taps, everything,' said Mr Chiu, who has lived with his flatmate for more than 10 years. He has avoided fighting as his flatmate is 10 years younger and stronger. 'Every time we had an argument he shouted about chopping me and killing me, so I just gave in and let him use things first,' he said. Mr Chiu said he was frustrated - it was the third time he had demonstrated for proper housing, yet nothing had changed. His problems were compounded by the fact that his building was to be demolished and he had yet to be told of future arrangements. 'I hope the Government can arrange a flat for me to live alone,' he said. The protesters also delivered gifts for the Governor: a giant pair of spectacles, a steamer containing fake rodents and a coffin, saying they hoped the Governor could take a deeper look into the problems they were enduring. They also voiced their disapproval of a new Housing Authority scheme under which tenants who cannot afford their rent are to be relocated after two years to older flats.