The Ghana Union of Traders’ Association (GUTA), says it is hopeful that the President, Nana Akufo-Addo’s appointment as the ECOWAS Chair will help address trade-related issues among members of the Community.
GUTA said this in a statement to congratulate the President on his new appointment as the Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
“We are confident that as a leader of ECOWAS and also the host of the secretariat of the AfCFTA, he would use his good offices to ensure that the rules of engagements in these protocols are strictly applied in solving all trade-related matters,” the statement read.
According to GUTA, the President will excel in executing his new roles “given his wealth of experience, knowledge and exemplary leadership, coupled with his full awareness of the enormity of the challenges facing the Community”.
Over the years, there have been trade disagreements between Ghanaian traders and their foreign counterparts, especially Nigerian traders due to the involvement of the latter in retail business in Ghanaian markets.
This has led to the closure of some Nigerian shops in Accra and Kumasi on different occasions.
Clashes between Ghanaian and Nigerian traders have also led to the destruction of some properties of Nigerian traders.
The government has given indications that it is trying to approach the situation with tact to ensure that the relationship between the two countries is not marred, but the Ghana Union of Traders’ Association believes that government is not serving their interest.
Recently, the Nigerian traders filed a complaint to its government that its members had over time endured series of “progressive acts of hostility” allegedly meted out to them by Ghanaian authorities and traders, which included the closure of their shops.
This compelled the government of Nigeria to issue a strong warning to the Government of Ghana, stating that it will no longer tolerate any form of alleged harassment of its citizens residing in Ghana.
But in a communiqué issued on September 4 after a two-day bilateral discussion regarding recent hostilities in respect of the closure of shops of Nigerian retail traders, the Speakers of the Parliament of Ghana and the House of Representatives of Nigeria have resolved to work towards regularizing trading activities in both countries.