President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said the newly-opened Kumasi City Mall has stolen the bragging rights of the Accra Mall.
Speaking at the official opening ceremony of the $95 million dollar facility in the Ashanti Regional capital on Wednesday, 10 May, Nana Akufo-Addo said residents in the Garden City should not be perturbed about the social media trolls that associated the opening of the sprawling edifice since Ghanaians knows Kumasi has the biggest shopping mall in Ghana.
He indicated that their counterparts in Accra engaged in the online troll because those in Kumasi have robbed them of their bragging rights of having the biggest mall in West Africa.
“[People in Accra] resorted to making fun of you and trolled you on Facebook and social media when this mall was opened for business last month. The reason is simple: … they no longer have the bragging rights of having the biggest mall in West Africa,” he stated.
“As from this moment, it is no longer ‘yenso yewobi’ but ‘kese3 no wo Kumasi’. KCM [Kumasi City Mall] you do all,” he joked.
The Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II who officially opened the mall named the Food Court at the mall after his late mother and Asantehemaa, Nana Afia Kobi Serwaa Ampem II.
Meanwhile, managers of the Kumasi City Mall have attributed the high patronage of the facility in the last few weeks to the social media trolls.
The mocking of residents of Kumasi online following the opening of the facility turned out to be a blessing with the mall recording 75,000 visitors on May Day, up from the 67,000 it registered when it was first opened to the public in April. Managers of the facility view the development as unprecedented given similar facilities in other parts of the country have never recorded such numbers in a day.
Speaking to Class News’ regional correspondent Hafiz Tijani, the marketing manager of the mall, John Badu Bonsu, said: “There is nothing like negative publicity, every publicity depends on how you manage it.”
He added: “The pictures that went viral, most of them weren’t true: you can’t bring goats into a mall; it’s not possible but it also helped us. We had a special international coverage. BBC actually made a report on us and it took us international. We trended on Twitter for two weeks and everybody was talking about Kumasi Mall.
People wanted to actually come and see if what they were hearing was true and when they came and it wasn’t true, they went back to talk about us, so I think it helped in a way. We wouldn’t have loved something like that to happen but as it happened it was very fruitful to us.
The opening day we had 67,000 people, subsequently 45,000 people, and on May Day we had 75,000 people coming – it’s never happened anywhere in Ghana before.”