OPERATIONS at the National Social Security Authority (NSSA)-owned Beitbridge Hotel are likely to stall as the authority and Daniel Mandishona, the architect and project manager, continue to fight over outstanding fees totalling $1,7 million.
The new $50 million hotel managed by Rainbow Tourism Group is operating on a temporary permit as the complex still needs a certificate of completion.
Mandishona, through his lawyers Chinyama and Partners, argues that the authority owes him over $1,7 million in architectural and management fees on the project as agreed in their 2007 contract.
A P Lloyd from Gill, Godlonton and Gerrans is the arbitrator in the matter while Mandishona is represented by Chinyama and Partners and NSSA’s counsel is Chihambakwe, Mutizwa and Partners.
In his papers Mandishona seeks that he be awarded: “Payment of the total sum of $1 598 323,83 together with interest on the amount calculated from the 1st of September 2013, the date on which the whole amount was due, to date of payment in full at the bank rate of 4,5% per annum.”
The parties, according to Mandishona, had agreed to a 1,5% fee for project management and 6% for architectural services based on the final total project cost.
However, NSSA in its response argued that it could not pay the full fees since it cancelled the agreement on the advice of the State Procurement Board (SPB) that highlighted the fact that Mandishona could not supervise himself.
NSSA said the project management contract was terminated in 2010 after the SPB raised concerns of conflict of interest in the deal.
“On July 26, 2010, the SPB found that the appointment of the claimant (Mandishona) on a project managed by DMA (Daniel Mandishona Architects) constituted conflict of interest which was not permissible at all, in a public institution because the claimant was managing himself — hence the project management contract was a nullity and voidable at law,” NSSA averred.
Both parties have since filed their papers and a decision is expected in due course.