Members of the Accra Mall Tenants Association have decided to temporarily close down their shops on Thursday, 24 October 2019 to bring to the fore the “onerous conditions under which they operate at the mall.”
About a year ago, parts of the ceiling of the mall collapsed.
Before it could be fixed, another section of the ceiling at the entrance to Game also caved in after heavy rains.
According to the tenants, both incidents hugely affected patronage at the mall which led to a downward spiral of revenue for them.
In a statement, the tenants said despite numerous protests and engagements with the management of the mall over the matter, nothing was done to fix the ceiling until about a month ago.
The statement continued that: “To fix the ceiling, the management of the mall has erected scaffolds in the walkways of the whole mall despite protestations from the tenants that this would rather scare customers away.”
The tenants say they proposed that the scaffolds be erected at the sections where work was being done and then moved to other sections of the ceiling as work progressed rather than erecting the scaffolds all over the walkways of the mall, but the management ignored their concerns and persisted with the scaffolds “with the result being that patronage to the mall has worsened, leaving the tenants in a worse position.”
The tenants said they also raised concerns about the exorbitant rent and the lack of promotional activities by the management of the mall but to no avail.
The statement noted that: “To address these concerns, representatives of the tenants met with representatives of the Accra Mall landlords on or about the 26th of September 2019 to address issues of common interest”.
Among the issues discussed at the said meeting are:
· The low patronage at the mall due to how the ceiling repair works of the mall are being done
· The insufficient number and deplorable condition of the washrooms at the mall
· Insufficient marketing activities to promote the mall to impact sales positively
· A request for a reduction in rent during the period of the renovation of the ceiling.
· A general reduction in rent across the board
“The management of the mall and the landlords promised to address the concerns of the tenants two weeks after the said meeting but failed to do so.
“It is poignant to note that as a result of the concerns raised by the tenants, including the huge rent which have ultimately led to a slump in patronage and revenue, a huge number of shops including multinationals from South Africa have closed their shops and left the mall.”
The remaining tenants have, thus, decided to close their shops on Thursday, 24 October 2019 between the hours of 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. to protest the decisions of the management of the facility.