ICON Properties commits to provide a Police Unit at Chichiri Shopping Centre

In an effort aimed at tightening security around Chichiri Shopping Centre and the surrounding area, ICON Properties Plc has committed to provide a Police Unit office facility — currently under construction towards the underground carpark entrance for Game Stores.

The Police Unit will not only tighten security of the shoppers at the mall but will also extend to provide security for the surrounding premises.

Though there is plenty security provided by private firms, complete with a watchtower, motorists as robbed of valuable from their cars whilst shopping.

ICON Properties and Eris Properties CEO, Ellen Chapinduka Nyasulu

The robbers identify a vulnerable vehicle and they park their car next to it and pretend to be chatting while one attempts to open it using multiple keys they keep.

The guards would spot them but believe that friends have met each other by chance parked next to each other and would chat and drive off while another would saunter into the Shoprite or Game Stores like they going for shopping.

ICON Properties and Eris Properties Chief Executive Officer,  Ellen Chapinduka Nyasulu said they have decided to build the Police Unit in response to the request from the office of the Regional Commissioner of Police who asked for such space at the area.

The Chichiri Shopping Mall

Nyasulu said with ICON Properties being a business that is into providing accommodation solutions, it was only proper for it to consider the social need, which would at the end of the day provide symbiotic benefits to both the patrons of the mall as well as the surrounding areas from a security perspective.

“As ICON Properties and Eris Properties management, we are committed to ensuring that there is enough security for our tenants and the shoppers.

“We noted that our law enforcers observed some security challenge which was being faced around Chichiri area and wanted to step up their presence therein.

“However, what they lacked was accommodation, that’s when we came up with this initiative to have a police unit within the premise to allow the law enforcers provide security at a large scale.

“We want to ensure that Chichiri area, including the shoppers at the mall, the sporting fraternity for the stadium have a great and secure experience. Beyond providing security at the malls, we believe it is our responsibility as corporate citizen to hold hands with government efforts for a safe Malawi for all.”

Meanwhile, ICON Properties noticed its tenants last month that it intends to introduce car park management system at Chichiri Shopping Mall to promote safe, efficient and orderly use of the car park.

A notice from Eris Properties on behalf of ICON Properties, said it had procured a car park management system as an approach to provide innovative solution to parking problems the shopping mall is currently facing.

When implemented, the system is expected to discourage abuse including speeding motorist passers-by and use of the car park by non-customers.

During weekends — when they are football matches at the neighbouring Kamuzu Stadium — fans park at the mall and in the almost 3 hours they are at the stadium, the car park gets congested — denying customers chance to shop.

Most shoppers who know the trend, prefer to use alternative supermarkets than their preferred Shoprite and Game Stores, which also has an underground car park, but it too is used by non-shoppers such as the football fans.

The mall’s other tenants are bank branches, mobile phone service providers, pharmacies, technology shops, bookshop, dentist, boutiques and restaurants, including KFC — housed in a recently constructed structure.

Managed by Afribrand, the stately KFC restaurant includes the much-sought after Drive-Inn service, which takes few minutes from point of order though an intercom, to the paying cubicle and finally the food handover cubicle.

Most times when the neighbouring Masauko Chipembere Highway roundabout is congested, motorists approaching from Kwacha roundabout branch into the mall’s car park through access to Puma service station.

Most of them — especially minibuses drivers from Limbe who cut into road to Kwacha and branch to the mall — overspeed as they rush to rejoin Masauko Chipembere Highway.

The notice to its tenants, ICON Properties says the system will have  features like pay-on-exit and automatic number plate recognition —  “to curb abuse and enhance security at the mall”.

“In a few week, works will commence and any comments, feedback and suggestions will be welcomed as this development is primarily aimed at boosting business at the mall by ensuring customers have access to parking,” said the statement from Henry Kandoje, centre team lead.

The decision to provide a police unit was announced by Nyasulu on Sunday when ICON Properties and Eris Properties held a Christmas tree lighting and Carols ceremony, held at the shopping centre to set the mood for the festive season with its shoppers, tenants and the community.

The colourful event saw the lighting of a gigantic Christmas tree, performances from various artists and fun for kids and adults and as part of its social responsibility, ICON Properties and Eris Properties further donated K500,000 to Enriching Lives Organisation which feeds orphans, elderly people, and people with various impairment.

Another set of Christmas Carols will be held in Lilongwe at Lilongwe City Mall, another of ICON Properties Mall, on December 23.

Apart from Chichiri Mall, and Lilongwe City Mall,  ICON Properties owns several other magnificent buildings in the main cities and the security unit is expected to be handed over to Police authorities at the beginning of next year.—Additional reporting by Duncan Mlanjira, Nyasa Times

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