Angry Suame traders chase out police

Police personnel in the Ashanti regional capital Kumasi, who were detailed to arrest some artisans at the Suame magazine were been chased out by the angry artisans.

Some members of the Suame Spare Parts Dealers Association on Monday locked up shops belonging to Nigerian retailers at the market.

The Ashanti Regional Command subsequently detailed personnel to the area led by the Suame station officer DSP Oduro, to arrest the traders but they had to retreat, when about 70 angry traders confronted them.

“The people surrounded the police [who were armed]; we were about 70 in number and we could not control them so tactically, we had to withdraw, come back and restrategise,” DSP Oduro told Luv FM’s Erastus Asare Donkor.

The other option is to go to the market with summons “and  paste it on their doorways”, he suggested.

The officer said but for his intervention, his men would have clashed with the traders as one of the artisans charged on him and heckled him physically, when they got to the market.

 “One of them heckled me and I restrained my boys,” DSP Oduro said.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian traders insist their trade is not in breach of any law.  A Nigerian retailer whose shop was locked up said a group of people stormed his shop and asked his workers to ‘go out go out we want to lock up the place’.

He said he had no choice but to allow them considering their number. Contrary to reports by members of the Association that they were doing business illegally the Nigerian said, he was duly registered and has documents to support his business.

He, however, pleaded with members of the association to give him some time to relocate if they insist that he leaves.

The Suame Magazine, located in Kumasi is recognized as the largest industrialized area with many workshops for metal engineering and vehicle repairs in Ghana, employing about 200,000 people.

It is also recognized as the largest artisan engineering center in Sub-Saharan Africa.

By law, the sale of goods and provision of services in the market, petty trading, hawking, taxi services, operation of beauty salons and barbering shops are the sole preserve of Ghanaians therefore, non-Ghanaians or non-citizens cannot operate in that market. Story by Ghana | | Jerry Tsatro Mordy | [email protected]

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