Accra Mall shops threaten closure over ‘high rent’

Barring any unforeseen intervention, shops in Accra Mall will be shut down on Thursday as shop owners at Accra mall protest what they describe as unreasonably high rent and poor services.

The shop owners said they would close down their shops from morning to afternoon to drive home their demand for rebates as ongoing repair works bite hard on sales and take a more drastic decision if the management of the mall failed to reason with them.

Rent at the Accra Mall costs between $80-86 (GH¢430- GH¢455) per square metre.

The shop owners alleged that efforts to get the managers of the mall, Broll Ghana, to renegotiate their rent because of ongoing repairs, which was affecting sales, had fallen on deaf ears.

“The management are not willing to listen to the genuine concerns of tenants. There are now scaffolding all over the place, repairing the damage to the roof a year after part of it collapsed,” lawyer for the tenants, Dr Maurice Ankrah, told the Daily Graphic.

Structural integrity

Parts of the ceiling of the Accra Mall collapsed on October 11, 2018 causing injury to three shoppers.

Although no fatalities were recorded, apart from three shoppers, who managers of the facility said sustained minor injuries, it triggered safety concerns from visitors and shoppers who became alarmed over the probability of something similar happening in the future.

The incident, Dr Ankrah said, had shrunk the number of shoppers visiting the mall over structural integrity concerns but managers of the mall had done little to allay the fears of the public, only to come and erect scaffolds all over.

The public fear might be as a result of the November 7, 2012 Melcom collapse that resulted in the death of 14 people and injury to 73 others.

The disaster was blamed on faulty construction, which caused the multi-storey shopping centre at Achimota in Accra to collapse.