Governments urge to invest in small businesses

By Patience A. Gbeze, GNA

Accra, Aug. 15, GNA
– Professor Franklyn Manu, the Rector of Ghana Institute of Management and
Public Administration (GIMPA), has stressed the need for governments to invest
in smaller business to help grow the economy.

He said: “These
smaller businesses are the drivers of every economy, unfortunately our
governments over the years had not seen the importance of this sector and
rather turned their attention on bigger businesses, both locally and foreign
owned”.

He noted that those
incentives, if re-directed to smaller businesses, would help address the
unemployment problems facing most developing countries as well as grow their
economy.

Prof. Manu, who was
speaking at the launch of the Makola Institute, a training institute for
traders in Accra, said market women and men understood the economics of doing
business and the only thing they needed was encouragement to reduce the
unemployment rate.

The Makola
Institute is aimed at bridging the knowledge divides at the market place by
providing free basic management and technological skills and low-cost
consultancy services to large numbers of market place business operators.

These services and
training programmes would be provided both in English and in the local
languages throughout Ghana.

Prof Manu said the
objective of teaching practical skills was very important for the survival and
efficiency of the traders and commended the initiators for their vision and
commitments.

He stressed the
need to develop the skills of traders and entrepreneurs to become more
efficient to grow the economy.

He urged financial
institutions to look at the brilliant ideas behind those businesses instead of
the collateral guarantee, adding; “it is about time we changed our thinking
about our traders in Makola”.

Prof Joseph
Ofori-Dankwa, the Executive Chairman and Founder of Makola Institute, said the
institute sought to transfer business survival and growth principles from the
market place to corporate institutions, schools and religious groups.

He explained that
the name “Makola” is used as a metaphor, symbolic of market places all over
Ghana and Africa and is in partnership with the Street Education Project to
achieve their goals.

Prof. Ofori-Dankwa
said there were multiple knowledge divides such as technological, linguistic,
and economic which existed between market place business operators and its
wider societal stakeholders that needed to be bridged.

He expressed
gratitude to the Board of Directors, family, friends and all those who made the
dream a reality.

“The Makola
Institute has come to stay and I urge all to contribute through
knowledge-sharing, financial and prayerful support in order to help realise the
Institute’s principal objective of improving upon the operational efficiencies
within the market places and thus provide assistance for national and community
development,” Prof. Ofori-Dankwa said.

Mrs Comfort
Oduro-Nyarko, the Chief Executive Officer of Makola Institute, recounted her
trauma as a trader at the Makola and Kaneshie markets and how she overcame
major obstacles and hurdles.

She expressed her
heart felt gratitude to the Founder, families, friends and church members who
stood for her during her difficult times and also assisted her to achieve her
goals in life.

Mr Rchard Yaw
Asante, of Asante and Asante Limited, dealers in consumable goods at Medina
Market, was one of the two award winners for his dedication and resilience in
the face of frustrations at the market place for close to three decades.

He said apart from
access to credit, they also had problem with their customers and employers as
they were not trustworthy and sometimes took their goods away without paying
them.

Mr Asante said the
Makola Institute had come to redeem them from some of their challenges and was
grateful to it for the recognition.

He, therefore,
urged the authorities to allow the system to deal with criminals who had been
duping businesses to face the full rigors of the law, saying, “these criminal
activities are bringing most successful businesses down”.

The Makola
Institute has offices in Makola and Kaneshie markets and would be extended to
other markets across the country in future.

GNA

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