Traders and hawkers operating around the Makola Market are defying the de-congestion exercise by the Accra Metropolitan Assembly(AMA), to crack down on street hawking in the Central Business District of Accra.
The de-congestion exercise introduced some years back, is a way of bringing order to the city centre of Accra.
A survey conducted by the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in the city centre indicated that brisk business was going on making it impossible for pedestrians to walk freely on the pavements.
Most of the pedestrians were using the streets instead of the pavements, and complained that the hawkers had taken over the pavements.
The hawkers said, though they respected the AMA’s directive to vacate the pavements, they had nowhere to go than to sell on them to make a living.
Madam Efua Abokuma who spoke to the GNA said “Today seemed to be their luckiest day because the AMA Task Force had not come to evict the traders from the pavements or to seize their wares”.
Madam Abena Amoakoa, a fish seller said she was a single mother with three kids to fend for, and with no support from anywhere, she was forced to hawk on the pavements, and added that if the government provided sheds at a good location for them with low rates or no cost at all, she and her colleagues would willingly re-locate and leave the streets.
Some shop owners who spoke to GNA said the hawkers competed with them for their customers which sometimes led to unnecessary confrontations.
Mr Edward Asimah, a shop owner said the AMA should be more proactive in ridding the streets and pavement of the hawkers.
He expressed regret that though the shop owners paid tax to the AMA to keep the city clean, there were heaps of garbage scattered all over the streets, resulting in the breeding of mosquitoes and a disturbing stench.