ONE of Gwanda’s leading retail outlets, McInn Supermarket run by businessman Mgcini Nkolomi, has been forced out of a building owned by Transport minister Obert Mpofu ostensibly for purposes of renovations.
McInn’s closure has left almost 20 workers facing an uncertain future. Besides its relatively low prices, the supermarket was famed for its annual “General Josh” promotion which celebrated the life of the late Vice-President Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo.
Last year, a lucky winner drove away in a VW Golf and organisers had promised a bigger and better competition this year.
The building, which Mpofu bought last year from Forbes and Thompson, is currently undergoing renovation resulting in businesses that were operating from there shutting down. Although management referred questions to Nkolomi, who was not answering his phone, a notice pasted outside the supermarket yesterday read “McInn closed for renovations for the next three weeks”.
However, speculation is rife that the supermarket may fail to return to business after several shops moved out of the building owing to high rentals charged by Mpofu.
Strides Guest House and Restaurant owned by Zanu PF Gwanda Central MP Edison Gumbo as well as T&G Butchery that was being run by Gwanda mayor Knowledge Ndlovu are among the businesses that have been forced to vacate the premises due to astronomic rentals which were reportedly increasing by 100% since Mpofu’s family business took over the building.
When Southern Eye visited the supermarket yesterday, stunned shoppers were being turned away by distraught workers who sat outside the shop awaiting transport to ferry goods removed from the shop.