The owners of the Junction Mall have closed an outlet belonging to Nakumatt Supermarkets after the High Court set aside orders that allowed the troubled retailer escape an initial eviction bid two weeks ago.
The management of the shopping complex, which is majority owned by the wealthy Ndegwa family, says Nakumatt’s agents and employees can now only access the premises to remove their “stock, items and property.”
Nakumatt was momentarily kicked out of the premises two weeks ago over unpaid rent, which the owners of the mall say ranges between Sh50 million and Sh75 million.
The financially-troubled retailer obtained orders from the High Court blocking Junction Limited, which had moved to shut down its premises, from effecting the closure until an inter partes hearing is held.
The High Court on Wednesday set aside the orders, prompting the owners of the Junction Mall to forcefully shut the retailer’s doors for the second time in as many weeks.
“The injunction that Nakumatt had obtained on October 2 has been discharged and no trading will be permitted at the premises,” the Junction Mall says in a statement.
“Consequently, the premises will be closed to the public from today.
Nakumatt’s directors, authorised agents and employees will however be permitted controlled access for the purpose of removing the tenant’s stock, items and property.”
It emerged in court that Nakumatt and the mall’s owners had entered into an agreement in relation to the premises that included paying Sh20 million every month to clear the rent arrears.
The retailer, which has also been kicked out of the Thika Road Mall (TRM), was also to demonstrate that they had a viable recovery plan that was to include adequately restocking its store.
The owners of the Junction Mall soon thereafter accused Nakumatt of failing to adhere to this agreement and moved to effect the surrender clause as per its reading of the pact.
However, Nakumatt accused the management of the Junction Mall of breaching this agreement.
The retailer then obtained orders from the High Court to continue operating in the shopping complex.
These orders have now been set aside, allowing the Junction Mall management to evict Nakumatt and adding to their piling woes.