The Abossey Okai Spare Parts Dealers Association has vowed to kick out all illegal foreign retailers within the enclave as they shut close to 200 shops.
The Ghanaian traders embarked on the action at about 8 pm on Tuesday, resulting in the arrest of three leaders of the Abossey Okai Spare Parts Dealers Association.
Nearly 200 shops, mostly owned by Nigerians, were locked “until further notice”.
The Chairman of the Association, Siaw Ampadu, told theghanareport.com that they have lost confidence in the Ghanaian authorities in resolving the matter, which has persisted for decades.
Mr Ampadu disclosed that three of the leaders were arrested at about 9:30 pm and detained at the Accra Regional Headquarters until 1 am after which they were released to report back on Wednesday.
He said successive governments had failed to implement the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) Act on retail to protect Ghanaian traders.
Under the new GIPC Act, 2013 (Act 865), all enterprises in the country with foreign participation are required to register with the GIPC.
The minimum capital required for retail business has moved from US$300,000 to $1 million, while foreign investors who participate in joint venture enterprises have to show a minimum capital of $200,000 with wholly-owned foreign enterprises showing a minimum capital of $500,000.
Mr. Ampadu said this was not being implemented and foreigners had moved into areas reserved for Ghanaians.
He emphasized that politicians are making every effort to guard their territories and “since MPs are protecting their seats we have to protect our businesses”.
He, however, assured that “foreigners who have legitimate documentation can stay”.
According to him, they had picked up intelligence that the Kaneshie Police are planning to open the shops.
He expressed his displeasure and vowed that “if they (police) go ahead and open the shops, next time they will hear a different thing from us”.
Meanwhile, the Association is scheduled to hold a meeting with the MP for Ablekuma Central on Wednesday to find a lasting solution.
We are tired of living in Ghana – Nigerian spare parts dealers
One of the traders, who spoke to the media, expressed his frustrations.
“They can buy my goods today and I will go tomorrow. I am tired of staying in this country and this kind of illegality. The government continues to allow them to be working this way, and they are putting our lives in danger. This must stop now,” expressed in anger.
Meanwhile, police have been deployed to the enclave to restore order.
Ghana Union Traders Association (GUTA) closes Nigerian shops
The action by the spare parts dealers is a fraction of a general clampdown being embarked on by the Ghana Union Traders Association (GUTA), who have been locking up shops of Nigerians in the last few years.
Foreign shops in Suame, as well as other areas in the Ashanti Region, were shut for weeks in 2019.
Those in Accra, especially in the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange and Tip Toe Lane areas, have also had their share of closures.
Meanwhile, the President of the Nigerian Union of Traders Association Ghana (NUTAG), Chukwuemeka Nnaji has called on the government of Ghana to protect its members.
He said they did not have a problem submitting their documents to relevant authorities for authentication to allow them to operate, but the actions of the Ghanaian traders were inappropriate.
He emphasized that under ECOWAS protocols they were permitted to operate in Ghana.
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