Peermont changes tune on Malawi’s new hotel

What was seen as a done deal is now crumbling. The South African hotel operator Peermont Global Limited, which signed a deal in May this year with Malawi Government to manage new hotel facility in capital Lilongwe has shown signs of backing off from the arrangement after inspecting the facility and observed that it is below standard for their operation.

 Nyasa Times has been reliably informed that Peermont management recently made a thorough inspection of all the buildings that make up the facility and was not impressed mainly with the substandard construction works.

Malawi's Presidential Hotel

Malawi’s Presidential Hotel

According to an inside source closer to the deal the Peermont group that visited the place found out that some of the fittings and walls in the buildings have already started showing signs of wearing out and crumbling despite that most part of the facility has never been used.

“The team that visited all the structures was not impressed and there is fear that if they go ahead taking up management of the facility it would affect their reputation as an international brand. At the moment the final handover arrangements have been put on hold until a thorough report is presented by the team,” said the source.

The Lilongwe hotel built  by the Bingu wa Mutharika administration with the assistance from the Chinese Government was christened Umodzi Park and comprise of an international conference centre, a 130 five-star hotel and presidential village.

The hotel goes by the name of Presidential Hotel, while the 3,500 seater conference centre was named Bingu International Conference Centre (BICC) and the presidential village is called Umodzi Presidential Villas.

Most parts of the facility had stayed for closer to three years since completion without government finding the official operator after some contractual squables in the process.

So far it is only the BICC facilities which have been in use and were being managed by a local hotel chain Sunbird Hotels under the tag of Umodzi Properties Limited.

“Peermont mainly blame the Chinese contractors for a shoddy work on the multi-billion kwacha facility. At the moment Malawi Government has been left with little options on how to go ahead with the management of the facility, it might end up being managed by Sunbird Hotels,” said the source.

Malawi and the South African based company signed a management agreement in May this year and there was an expectation that handovers will be concluded by November this same year for the facility to start operating under Peermont Hotels.

The facilities were built with US$100 million Chinese concession loan payable in 30 years.

With the complex Malawi Government was looking forward to providing world class tourism service.

The choice of Peermont was regarded as was strategic to give the complex internationally recognized brand to provide confidence to the travellers about the destination and improve overall destination’s perception.

It was also envisaged that with such an internationally recognized brand the place would easily attract international business.

Peermont Global owns and operates several properties in South Africa like Emperors Palace and Grand Palm among others and in Botswana they manage Gaborone International Convention International Centre.

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63 thoughts on “Peermont changes tune on Malawi’s new hotel”

  1. I dont think the reporter right,becoz nobody cannot sign a contract without visiting the premises.

  2. chingolopiyo says:

    I would like to agree with NO41. I wonder if the reporter of this story has true facts or just fabricating . How can someone sign a deal without inspecting the premises. This is a contract and before it was signed it meant the company going to ran the hotel were full satisfied with facilities before putting pen to paper. Mind you this is an international deal, not what you do when you have drunk bibida at Bwandilo. Please please give us true stories.

  3. Sue Paramount says:

    Charge paramount 50 billion for lost of busness earning. If it was GoM breaching the contract we could have paid billions.

  4. Darius Mphongo says:

    If the structure was built using money loaned from the country where the contractors came from, after completion was there a proper handover done and did the Malawi government engage her qualified engineers who sanctioned the viability of the end product? My other worry is that after construction this building was left unoperational for sometime, are Malawians so naive not to discern that an unoccupied building gets dilapidated faster than the one that is being used? The previous government was playing hide and seek by trying to bring in operatives of their choice who could help them in siphoning proceeds from the hotel, hence it’s nature of being neglected. It therefore entails that the Malawi government is going to pay for a building which will crumble within a short period, koma kumeneko. Zipani zolamula zaku Malawi zimenezo.

  5. mpumulo wa bata says:

    Garbage In garbage out.

  6. Shoddy deals 5 or 10 more years under the DPP government is just another waste of Malawians precious time and resources to hell with their cosmetic development agenda

  7. Liwombo says:

    I pray that the parliamentarians will start proposing and authorising more useful loans than mere beautifying the cities with mediocre chinese built buildings. Why cant we get a loan for sourcing water from the lake and shire river for our cities, as the water supply in these cities is inadequate despite having big fresh water bodies across the country. Lets now invest for the long term, not short term.

  8. yabooka says:

    Bingu new kuti anamanga zosalimba komanso kuba za mbiri thats Y anafunisinsa kuti His young bro akhale president now after realising that Most Malawians were not happy with his leadreship style, rendering very almost zero hope for his bro to take up the mantle anathawira ku manda…. He knew about these trouble b4 him MHSRIP

  9. Yemwe Uja says:

    It does not make any sense to me, how could they sign a deal without seeing the facility. Give it to Sun Bird.

  10. Liwombo says:

    Even the design is poor. It is better to have a three-storey building, covering a wide area, thana tall narrow boxy building. I think those who designed Capital Hotel had a better vision, only lacking is innovation and maintenance.

  11. Mfwethu says:

    Peermont just want to put the MG on a corner, ndimayesa ndi omwewa anatenga jet yathu! Akufuna kutifinya kuti tisatenge ndege yathu, asiyeni Sunbird has always provided better services to Malwwi afterall.

    1. Mbano says:

      Protea hotels is better than Sunbird.

  12. Ngoni Ruler says:

    A blame shld go to the former adminstration they a the ones do a silly thing concerning five star hotel contract,the lyks of kasambara,rachael zulu they hve a hand on that.

  13. MMalawi says:

    Why can’t Malawians run it as a local investment. Involve local and diaspora business people as a consortium and this thing will work. Everyone knows that infrastructure deteriorates over time if left unused and three years is a very long time to leave a big investment like this. Common Malawi wake up, where is the pride! Lets use our own brains to prosper and stop just looking up to foreigners to run our country.

    1. hate says:

      mMalawi nkutheka? vuito lake tifunanso hotel gate pompo. Umve nkati, sizingayende mwina sunbird yomweyo basi.

  14. Chabwera Phiri says:

    When we embarked on this project i already told some people that this was a waste of resources, we could put that debt to a better use by maybe improving ESCOM power generation or give loans to Bunda graduates to start farms or something. See this joke of a hotel three years down the line it is just idle, even when it starts operating how many Malawians will afford to use it? And now akuti mamangidwe akenso ndi a China, koma tikhala tikubweza ngongoleyo. We need leaders who can really lead.

  15. makechisasa says:

    Iwe BABI kayaya ndiwe BIBI ndiwe mbuzi! pa BICC waonapo dzina la amayi? shame on you! Malawians are already repositioning themselves, the recent voter apathy explains it all……..odziwa kusova wayamba kale kusova………….

  16. The Truthful One from the West says:

    BOBI Why are you blaming Joyce Banda? This is Bingu wa Mutharika’s work. The Chinese often do substandard works. Most goods made in China are substandard. China is a complete dictatorship where everyone tows the line of the Communist Party.

  17. aphade says:

    Iwe BABI Amayi sizikuwakhudza zama China akowa mulomwe nzako anamwalira uja is the one anamangitsa chiboliboli cha nyumbachi.Terrastorn inali kuti.

  18. hotlips says:

    Cashgate!

  19. Kenkkk says:

    Don’t wAste time on this. Give it to Sunbird to start operations so that at least we can have customers sleepjng on it. What do you expect three years being vacant, deterioration of course!!

  20. Truck says:

    Let us try the Malawian Rich Business people to take over that Hotel Business because time is running the interest of loan its still accumulating.Sometimes we must have Proudly Malawian heart like some Lodges along Lake Malawi belong to Malawians.

  21. lopee says:

    Should we say they were bidding without having inspected the building? What type of hospitality managers are you a Peermont? If you are not interested then leave, the second successful bidder will take over, infact i will not have a big problem if Sunbird clinches the deal coz they have experience in running local hotels. Muyende bwino and before you leave @ Peermont you need to pay us for incovenience and breach of contract due to non-performance. Bon voyage Peermont……..

  22. wawa says:

    Babi, you got it all wrong. The issue here is not about the contract which the JB government awarded to Peermont rather the problem is the build itself which the Peermont guys are not satisfied with. If anything the blame should go to the Chinese contractors, the then DPP government of late Bingu and government engineers who were supposed to be inspecting the building as it was being constructed. Our problem as a country is that we trust foreigners too much to the extent that we wholly sell ourselves to them. In the end this is what we achieve, below standard things. Let’s wake up and stop using foreign construction companies as if we do not have our own.

  23. Malawiana says:

    FAILED STATE, FAILED CITIZENS, FAILED EVERYTHING!

  24. RFD says:

    Local builders are total rubbish! They can waste your money for nothing.Most of them are not properly trained. You can buythe best expensive building materials and fittings imported from overseas. and these katakwes will manage to make it look like a latrine in the rural areas. Doors that don’t fit into their frames, windows that don’t close properly, beautiful tiles with smeared with tiling grout as if a grown man cannot wipe with a wet cloth. They just know how to put bricks together, but when it comes to workmanship forget! Nursery school boys playing Legos have more skill than these shahshas.

    If you want to build things of top quality, don’t only import building materials, import the builders as well.Ofcourse some people are going to complain that this will take business away from Malawian contractors, but unless these doba dobas can learn to build properly and stop damaging other people’s materials with their carelessness, they don’t deserve to be awarded big contracts like the presidential hotel. Let them continue building public toilets and market stalls, where nobody cares about quality control!

    1. johnM says:

      You may have a point however those responsible for the 5 star hotel were not locals, they were from China!!!!!

  25. eye eye says:

    How could Peermount sign the contract before inspection? It does not make sense for such a company? if it was the reverse, they would ask for compensation….Will the govt also ask for compensation if the contract is prematurely cancelled?

  26. Felix Mizimbe says:

    Hehehehehe!!! Malawians are and will always remain crazy. Amai and Kunkuyu have nothing to do with the construction of the facility in discussion. It was our Ngwazi Late Professor Binga Wa Muntharika. They knew that the contractor was doing a substandard job and where ies amai coming in? Look at Mzuzu centra hospital, parliament buildings its all chinese work. I dont support amai but I blame the first DPP regime for not being catious with the chinese. Remember this was being built by using prisoners from china at the expense of our own labour force heheheheheh koma ziliko!!!

  27. Waiting for Jesus ! says:

    Ki ki ki ki ki so if Peermont wont take it Sunbird will ha ha ha …. are you implying sunbird has no standards . No comment the hotel chain is a dinosaur ! Does not need searcch for a star , it needs search for affordable prices, prodects and search for innovation. MY MY MY Hotel incustry in Malawi is hopeless.

  28. kadamanja says:

    Za China sizilimba sizo tiyeni nazo a Malawi kudalila mu China vuto lake. Pearmont mwawachita bwino.

  29. salimu says:

    Stupid Iwe peermont was first approached by that crazy dead demon Bingu. JB wanted Legacy. The hotel was constructed under Bingu’s watch. Zakuba basi. Why blame JB.

  30. fkr says:

    If it is sub standard give it back to the Chinese and cancel the loan now

  31. hehe…substandard anuwakefe tikuti 5star.hw do we let the so called chines to borrow us money the same plan 4 our own structures and the same ching-changs build 4 us?akungotimangila zinthu zosalimba komaso zosaoneka bwino,look at our parliament building.

  32. Nzika says:

    g.i recall the peermont hotels team sending a team of technicians which included their chief of engineering and inspections to do a thorough inspection of the premises and they came out on Malawi tv highlighting the few shortfalls that they discovered and the plans they had on which they struck a deal with Government.It will be interesting to note that this is the group that dragged government to court when the Joyce Banda Government was in talks with another company called LEGACY.The re engangement of peermont, a group picked singlehandedly by some high office during the Bingu administration when Hon Daniel Liwimbi was minister of tourism, put an end to the legal battle with peermont saving Malawi from the threat of legal battles.
    Mr Mphande our columnist and BABI of comment 1,, you are doing the same thing but your puzzle has some pieces missing.make it very simple,,copy the assesment report and paste it for us to see. If anything, Malawi government will reap from peermont should they backtrack on their earier commitment.that is clear within the agreement that was reached after lengthy contract negotiations. Look at your mention of Moses Kunkuyu BIBI, a young quiet Man full of wisdom and intelligence. Who went against the choice of his government for an operator of the Hotel and returned to that of the Bingu administration just to save the country from unnecessary legal battles.This is the work of some Legacy guys whom I know are still interested in the Hotel but these are those guys who chose not to have it taxed in Malawi or south africa where they claim to come from but opt to have it registered in Mauritius and only operate in Malawi under a sub contract name of Twin Lions Hotel.All they will do under that arrangement is to broker the Hotel on our behalf and pay commission to the owners of the Hotel which is the Malawi Government and this is a commission of less than 20% of the profits.

  33. Ineyo says:

    if i may ask who built this substandard hotel ?

    1. Sue Paramount says:

      Ever heard of the Chinese? Every thing they make is substandard but foolish african government are buzy giving them billion dollar contracts across the continent. Lets wait until the dams they are building start collapsing……

  34. Common sense says:

    I have never seen a photo of the inside of this hotel. I think Nyasatimes too, do not have one.

  35. Mtumbo Lende says:

    When the hotel was being constructed, who else apart from Chinese were supervising the construction? I mean highly reputable engineering firm osati zimbatata za Ku BOMA. Zomangodzipatsa zi ma title ntchito asakuyidziwa. Akuti ma Chief Structural Engineer, za ziiiiiii. Look now. What you do when inspect such projects, you say “as government, we are impressed”. Osangonena kuti ngini simukuyi JAJA. MA PWALA ANU. WE ARE TIRED WITH THIS MEDIOCRITY.

    No sooner than later timvaso BIBI Ina from th new stadium kuti zasolobana. MUMATITOPESA NAZO MWAMVA . NYIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINIIIII ZANU

  36. Professional journalist says:

    We don’t need a foreign company to run a hotel. Let Sun Bird Hotel run it. I’ve faith in Malawians. Just do vigorous advertising.

  37. Shaulii Yako says:

    The Main Reason Peter Mutharika stole Malawi Presidential Vote,he is ruling on the stolen Presidential vote…For Mackson Mbendera Chairperson Of Malawi Electoral Commission to steal the May 20 Presidential Vote,450m Malawian was deposited into Justice Mackson Mbendera’s Account in South Africa…The World must know this today…

    The Main issue is Peermot Global Limited manages 5 Star Hotels and Facilities Internationally, Bingu Conference Centre and Umodzi Presidential Villas is cheap labour sub-standard Work without serious and proper Archtecture…IMF,WB and International Community are skeptical about the Administration of Peter. Mutharika and his DPP…This man stole Malawi Presidential Vote…

    Please be informed properly this facility was not built by Dr Joyce Banda,It was built buy Bingu wa Mutharika…

    Bingu wa Mutharika and his DPP have my vote of no confidence,he wasted Public Funds and Resources!

  38. Mneneli Wonyenga says:

    Did they bid? So they were bidding for what? Did they inspect the buildings before bidding? These are questions I need answers as a professional bidder.

  39. dopababi shopa says:

    Chinese name is characterize with poor quality of equipment, infrastructure etc. The practical example is the much talked five star hotel. Kaya osauka has no choice.

  40. mvula says:

    Dont blame amama, ambwiye trusted the Chinese so much. Zithu zomanga akaidi zingalimbe? Look at the parliament building. Clarcks all over. Apa ndiye tinabetsatu!

  41. Tengupenya says:

    Service standards sought not matched by the standard of the infrastructure investment made.

  42. Nyapapi says:

    Who doesn’t know that an unused building starts crumbling on its own?

    Fuck! Give it to Ryalls so they can run at least two hotels!

  43. Gona Mkulawe says:

    Do they mean that the building is surposed to be demorished or what do they mean by though? If they don’t want to operate that our hotel let them go.Because you don’t force the mater if you force the mater then the mater will force you.We can do without them.Likely enough we have sunbird company can manage to operate these hotels.aaa ndakutoperani tsopano.why you have sighned the deal before thoroughrly insepection?.

  44. Boko Haram says:

    Mnesa said it all,kusamva!!Taziwoneni mitu.Ukooooo

  45. BABI! Ukusokonezatu mwinanso sukudziwa what u r saying here. The facility was built by Bingu’s administration,palibe chikuwakhudza amayi apa.Musova!

  46. KANDAWE says:

    SHAME ON YOU ‘BABI’ I THINK U R OUT OF YOUR MIND AND U DONT KNW WAT TO COMENT BECOZ OF LACK OF UNDESTANDING DUE IGNORANCE OF NOT UNDERSTANDING ENGLISH, U BETER GO BACK TO SCHOL

  47. Dunstan Phiri says:

    This has nothing to do with women leadership my friend.The hotel was built during the time of Bingu,

  48. Crispin Mkandawire says:

    We should have examined this structure more carefully before receiving the keys from the builders. If there were any lingering doubts, we could even have invited recognized international inspectors to have a look, to avoid future headaches.

  49. BABI says:

    Please Malawians dont ever trust women to take up leadership. even kids like Moses kunkuyu should not be trusted. look at this. we will pay MK4.4b for nothing.

    1. Tengupenya says:

      Bingu was not a woman.

    2. Ganamba says:

      No 1, what do u mean by saying women? This facility was built by an idiot called Bingu! Unless u r trying to call him a woman!

    3. Hello! says:

      Chokani nanunso apa, moti adamanga ndi JB chimenechi? Bwanji osamangovomereza kulephera kwanu. dzidakuchimani basi vomerani.

    4. Chemwali chimwene says:

      The issue here is the substandard building akulu. The chinese must have worked out something with Bingu, APM is the beneficiary if the spoils his brother got. JB found this structure already done. Yes she also delayed in getting a contractor but maybe this was the reason, good contractors do not want liability over substandard buildings. This is not scoan.

    5. Jabulosi says:

      Blame the contractor under DPP Bingu,could be where the MK62 Billion came from.Substandard work costing Malawian Tax Payers $100 million, my foot!!!

    6. Matthews says:

      You re just showing how shallow you are. What has this got to do with women leadership? Ngati mwakhuta nyemba don’t comment anything here.

    7. ujeni says:

      How does shoddy Chinese construction got to do with women leadership? Bingu and DPP government supervised and managed the whole construction process

    8. C. Chilemba says:

      Point of correction
      My understanding is that the reason for Peermont not taking the deal is the substandard construction works; and the place was NOT built during the “woman and kids” leadership.

    9. Aferazao says:

      It seems you failed to understand the article. You need to read things with an understanding and sober mind before you jump to make conclusions and comments that are contrary to the gist of the subject matter. Which part of the article prompted you to ridicule women and Moses Kunkuyu, was is it for hate or what? How did these contribute to the substandard work of the BICC and the Presidential Hotel. If anything you should channel that blame to Bingu (may his soul rest in peace) for entrusting the work of constructing the facility to the Chinese contractors. It is high time you learned to be objective and show the world that you did not come out of the school window faster than you should have.

    10. MuharaF says:

      Iwe pachakuti pako ndithu. Anamanga Hotel ndi amyi kapena Kunkuyu. Mmayesa anamanga ndi Ambuya ako malemu Mulupale. kape iwe eti

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