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Nigeria summons Ghana envoy over “painful” closure of Nigerian shops

The Nigerian government is demanding answers and an end to the shut down of shops operated by Nigerians in Ghana.

The Nigerian authorities made their concerns known after summoning the Chargé d’Affaires of Ghana to Nigeria, Iva Denoo.

The Foreign Affairs Minister of Nigeria, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, expressed concerns about the trend of closures in the past few years and destroying the livelihoods of some Nigerians present in Ghana.

He said the Nigerian government has “watched with dismay the painful videos of the forceful closure of the shops of Nigerian traders in Ghana”.

Mr Onyeama who posted proceedings of the meeting and stressed that “urgent steps will be taken”

Also present at the meeting was a delegation of the Nigerian traders in Ghana led by Mr Jasper Emenike, the National President of the Progressive Ambassadors of Nigeria (PAN) and Ruth Ango, National Director (PAN).

This was in response to the closure of more than 100 shops by the government of Ghana.

The Ghana Union of Traders’ Associations (GUTA) embarked on a series of such exercises, but the recent crackdown was the Presidential Committee on Retail Trade under the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

Shops without licenses owned by foreigners were shut at the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange business enclave with notices of similar exercises at Opera Square, Zongo Lane, Kantamanto, UTC and Kumasi.

They have justified their actions citing the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) regulations.

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.

Additionally, Section 28(5) of the Act stipulates that the minimum foreign capital requirements to invest in Ghana, including for engaging in trading, do not apply to the foreign spouse of a citizen of Ghana to the extent that the foreign spouse is or has been married to a citizen of Ghana for a minimum period of five years continuously or holds an indefinite resident permit prior to registration of an enterprise, amongst others.

Reaction from Nigerian Union of Traders Association Ghana (NUTAG)

NUTAG President, Chukwuemeka Nnaji, had been calling 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 emphasised that under ECOWAS protocols they were permitted to operate in Ghana.

 

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1 Comment
  1. Anonymous says

    we should even sack them from Ghana,they don’t respect any country rules and regulations.they are too much pampered.

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