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PSPF’s US$72m Long Acres Mall takes shape

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The construction of the multi-million dollar Long Acres Mall and Business Park embarked on by the Public Service Pensions Fund (PSPF) is well on schedule, with 28 percent of the works done so far. The facility, which is situated on Alick Nkhata Road in Lusaka, will include a shopping mall, hotel, office block and entertainment area.

And the PSPF has pledged a new and exciting partnership with the media in taking the fund’s services closer to the people.

When commissioning the US$72million project on May 24, 2017, Republican President Edgar Lungu, whose speech was read by the then Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry Margaret Mwanakatwe, said he was confident that the construction of the mall would raise revenue and ease pressure on the treasury once completed.

The Head of State praised the decision by the PSPF to embark on infrastructure development, saying the investment would in the long run benefit pensioners, serving members and beneficiaries of deceased estate.

Speaking to journalists during a tour of the ongoing construction works on Friday afternoon, resident engineer Terrence Mukula described the project as a landmark achievement in the Zambian construction industry.

Mukula said Long Acres Mall is the first of its kind in the country as it was designed and is being spearheaded by Zambians, explaining that GS Architects, the designers, and Palm Golding, the property consultants, are both Zambian companies.

“This project is being funded by PSPF – they are the main clients. The architects or designers were GS Architects, a Zambian-based company. Actually this, I can safely say, is the first big development which has completely been designed by Zambians, except for the hotel which has some changes made by South Africans,” Mukula said. “But the entire mall has been designed by Zambians. The architects are Zambians, the engineers are Zambians, the electrical and mechanical engineers are Zambians. So, it’s a pure Zambian baby designed by Zambian consultants and being supervised and managed by Zambian consultants. So, really it’s quite a milestone for our construction industry.”

Mukula disclosed that 70 per cent of the building materials were locally sourced while the remaining 30 per cent was being imported, adding that the works were well within the completion schedule of March 2019.

The main contractor on the project is China State Engineering Corporation, which is the 24th biggest construction company in the world.

The Long Acres Mall project is set to boost the PSPF’s investment portfolio where an estimated K50 million expected to be realised per annum.

Nkamu

And at a PSPF media sensitisation seminar in conjunction with the Media Institute for Southern Africa (MISA) Zambia at the Southern Sun Ridgeway Hotel earlier in the day, PSPF acting director for investments Matandiko Matandiko disclosed that the Fund had invested in another modern shopping mall along Panganani road in Lusaka, which.

“For the Panganani [building], we had a warehouse and an office block; we were only getting K1,200 per month. We put up a mall which is only worth about K7 million and it is giving us over K50,000 per month. Don’t you think we’ve created value for that? At the end of the day, that value is going to benefit the same members whose money we used to invest.”

Meanwhile, PSPF finance director Mujimba Nkamu revealed that the fund had taken pension services closer to the districts with the construction of 20 new offices, while 10 more are to be constructed later this year.

“We are taking pensions services closer to the districts and far-flung areas. This is so that we can do away with the congestion we have had in the capital city in the past. So far 20 new offices have been opened, with ten more expected to be opened this year,” Nkamu stated.

“We have modernized our programmes and procedures so as to improve customer service and ensure that our members are catered to within 5 to 10 minutes.”

Nkamu further explained that the PSPF board had approved an ambitious strategy to include the media in bringing awareness to its membership and the general public on the fund’s products and services so as to improve service delivery.

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Start: 2019-07-01 End: 2019-07-31