A task-force from the Trade Ministry is meeting the leadership of the Ghana Union of Traders Association and the Nigerian Union Traders Association to address the disagreements between them over retail trade at the Suame Magazine in Kumasi.
The leaders of the Nigerian retailers at the Suame Magazine say their members are living in fear following what they call incessant attacks on them.
The task-force, comprising officers from the Ghana Revenue Authority, the Customs, the Immigration Service, the National Security and the Ghana Standards Authority, have begun an exercise to inspect documents of Nigerian traders operating within the enclave.
The task-force will also check products that are being sold by the Nigerian traders.
Majority of shops belonging to the Nigerian traders have been opened after they were locked for the past two weeks.
One of the Nigerian traders who preferred his identity withheld told Citi News that he and his colleagues still need more protection even though they have opened their shops following the interventions of the task-force.
“They told us that we can open but sometimes you have to walk in fear because the way they forcefully asked us to leave with guns and machete, I am still a little bit afraid and we are still asking for more protection. They asked us to open, but we are still not being covered as we say, because those boys may still come up with another agenda,” he said.
Garage owners condemn attacks
Meanwhile, the Ghana National Association of Garages has condemned the attacks on Nigerians traders.
At a press conference on Wednesday, August 1, 2018, the regional Chairman of the association, Nana Osei Bonsu said though they support the ban of foreigners in retail, the Association frowns on the incessant attacks mounted on Nigerians by some Ghanaians within the artisanal enclave.
This comes after a vow made by some Ghanaian retailers to evict all foreigners who operate within the enclave.
Nana Osei Bonsu also asked the government to amicably settle the issues between the two factions to avoid reprisal attacks on Ghanaians.
Leave our markets now – Gov’t orders non-Ghanaians in the retail sector
Non-Ghanaians in retail trade were ordered to leave the Ghanaian markets by July 27, 2018, or face the wrath of the government.
The Ministry of Trade and Industry which gave the order in a statement threatened to take legal action against recalcitrant non-Ghanaians who fail to adhere to the directive.
But it later did a U-turn on the directive citing inadequate sensitization as the reason for the suspension.
By: Farida Yusif/citinewsroom.com/Ghana