Magnus Eze, Enugu
Coalition for the Safe Evacuation of Nigerian Traders in Ghana (COSENTIG) has demanded for an immediate activation of plans to evacuate Nigerian traders in Ghana to forestall unsavoury outcomes staring them in the face in their host country.
The group lamented the continued gruesome treatment meted out to Nigerian traders in the West African country, despite Nigeria’s diplomatic moves, including the visit to Ghana by Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.
In a statement by Alhaji Buba Amshi (North East), Emmanuel Zopmal (North Central); Ibrahim Bunu (North West), Nze Ugo-Akpe Onwuka (South East), Eric Oluwole (South West) and Bassey Livingstone (South South), the coalition urged the Federal Government to commence the evacuation before December.
“It is no more news that the Government of Ghana in its claims of targeting ‘foreigners’ engaged in petty trading, an area of trade they claim is reserved by law solely for the locals have resorted to targeting Nigerian traders in Ghana while other foreigners are allowed to freely operate in the same area of trading prohibited for the supposed foreigners.
“By these persistent actions since 2007, it has become very clear that the Ghanaian Government is flagrantly discriminating against the Nigerian nationals in its purported enforcement of the so-called investment laws.
“It is very pertinent to note that this decision was reached after critically considering the rapidly deteriorating free and uninhibited living of the Nigerian traders in Ghana,” they stated.
It noted that with the latest spate of closure of Nigerian owned shops in Ghana; things had gone from bad to worse for these traders as their lives had been endangered, while their sources of livelihood were put on hold.
According to the coalition; “Some of the traders are unable to receive medical treatment due to lack of finance, which ultimately leads to death (Instances abound); properties of affected traders being foreclosed on by Banks due to inability to meet up with loans payments as well as physical attacks and abuse from Ghana Union of Traders (Circle Branch, Accra).”COSENTIG vowed to mount a very strong and unrelenting campaign to ensure that the Federal Government acted in good time.