As a young man growing up in the Ashanti Region of Ghana, it was the dream to seek job opportunities with some famous businessmen and industrialists within the Region.
The likes of Apenten Appiah Menkah of Apino Soap, Mr. Opoku of Poku Trading Co. Ltd, and Kwabena Darko of Darko Farms Co. Ltd et al. were the drivers of prominent industries that served as the engine of growth for the private sector in the Region and country at large as well provided the required job openings for the numerous unemployed youth in their operational jurisdictions.
Unfortunately, political machinations by the est. while PNDC succeeded in grounding most of these businesses to a halt thus rendered their respective proprietors poor. Subsequently thousands of jobs were lost leading to a deterioration of social economic conditions in the region.
This forced some of the proprietors to seek political asylum outside of the country.
With our return to multi party democratic dispensation of the fourth republic, most of these businessmen tried unsuccessfully to resurrect and revive their business entities. This led to some of them dying as poppers in their own native country whiles others were bed ridden with stroke related diseases before their demise.
After these sad incidents, survivors of such harassment and their relations as well as all business minded Ghanaians have prayed against the recurrence of such unfortunate development.
In the last few years of the NDC 3 and 4 tenure, the situation seem to be recurring in another form as state institution such as BNI, EOCO, National Security etc. which are tasked with the mandate of protecting and securing national interests have found reasons to directly attack businesses of some hard working Ashanti business men under the pretext that they are not complying with some basic laws or regulations of their respective industries of operations.
In 2012, a wholly owned Ghanaian Small Scale Mining Company belonging to one Bernard Antwi Boasiako, now regional Chairman of the largest opposition party NPP in Ashanti, was in a Rambo-like manner attacked and destroyed by state security under the pretext that he was operating illegally although verifiable evidence at the Minerals Commission of Ghana has proved that the Company had a legitimate
licensed from government to prospect for gold at the time.
Soon after, another Ashanti industrialist, Mr. Tobin of Tobinco Ltd, a pharmaceutical entity became the target and was successfully destroyed and reduced to nothing by Gbevlo Lartey’s national security for allegedly importing certain drugs that he did not have the license to import.
This unfortunate attack led to the loss of over 500 jobs within a 3 month period. Not even an intervention by the sector minister could stop the harassment by the state security and as at now, Tobinco is gradually fallen apart and collapsing without any attempt by the insensitive Mahama administration to salvage it, yet they keep trumpeting their resolve to assist the growth of the local Pharmaceutical Industry.
Similar instances involving the proprietor of Kingdom Herbal Co. Ltd et al have also been recorded in recent times although they did not gain such attention as the Wontumi’s and Tobinco’s
Just a week ago, we have yet another report of another alleged malfeasance on the part of one of the most successful Ashanti businessmen Kwabena Kesse of Kessben group of Companies.
Kwabena Kesse who has been tagged as an NPP financier was picked up at the Kotoka International Airport as he arrived from abroad with his family after a holiday and is reportedly facing a charge of Money laundering, having been remanded by a court to appear in a week’s time.
The intriguing aspect of this development is the fact the bank which reportedly facilitated the transaction in the center of the controversy, Stanbic Bank, headed by the famous NDC stalwart and immediate past chairman of the Savanna Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) one Alhassan Andani has insisted that enough due diligence was done to ensure the legitimacy of the transaction, the NDC national Security apparatus is insisting on alleged wrongdoing.
My obvious question here is, whose interest is at play in this matter?
Is this not yet another clear attempt to destroy yet another successful Ashanti business guru just for the simple reason that he is an NPP financier as was in the case of Bernard Antwi Boasiako (Chairman Wontumi) et al?
Sadly enough, key and influential opinion leaders in the region have failed to realize the inherent motive and the enormity of the actions of the NDC state actors.
I am personally disappointed in the seeming silence of our most respected overlord the Asantehene Otumfour Osei Tutu II over the wanton “destruction” of his citizens by the insensitive NDC administration all in the name of flimsy violations of certain regulations.
I take this opportunity to call on Nana, to publicly speak on the matter and seek to protect the businesses of his indigenes to safeguard the socio economic development of his kingdom.
Nana Asantehene, please let’s hear your voice and opinion now on these matters!!!!