Tenants renting office space at the Haddon and Sly complex have had their businesses affected after the owners of the building locked the first and second floor amid reports that they were targeting those who owed rentals.
The move which has affected businesses that were up to date on their payments comes after the closure of the icon supermarket due to liquidity challenges.
The supermarket employees picketed against the management demanding their outstanding salaries.
Some of the affected tenants who spoke to CITE, said the building owners had given them notice to pay outstanding rentals by month end but when they turned up for work on Friday, they found the whole complex locked.
The three-story complex houses mostly small business enterprises.
“Yesterday the complex management gave us letters and the deadline to pay our outstanding debt was 30 September. We were surprised to see our shops’ doors blocked,” said one tenant who refused to identify himself.
Some of the tenants are said in arrears of as much as $24 000.
Tenants who do not have arrears said their business was being affected by this move.
“I do not owe anything but because of this, there are no clients coming. This is heavily affecting my business. How will l pay the next month’s rent if l can’t work,” said Makaita Tekere, who runs a manicure business.
Ground floor tenants whose shops were open also expressed dismay saying clients are not coming in because of the chaos.
Mr Oneus Ncube, the manager admitted to having given tenants letters but denied allegations that the deadline for payment of arrears was breached.
“We gave owing tenants letters and we always remind them to pay their rent but they do not do so. They know they have to pay with or without letters from us,” said Ncube.
He said tenants who want their shops opened should have to negotiate payment plans with the management.
“Our doors are open,” said Ncube
“Serious tenants will come and negotiate and we open their shops but those who don’t want to come will have their shops closed until clear all their arrears”.
Rentals at the Haddon and Sly complex range from between $150 to $1 500, a month.