Business activities at the Ghana/Togo border have hit an all time low this year with Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) lagging behind its target while revenue generated drops by 22 percent.
Customs officers have attributed the drop to the political tension ongoing in Togo as opposition political parties continue to mount pressure on President Faure Gnassingbe to leave office.
Joy News’ checks last month with Customs showed that the tension had no impact on business activities at the border but the story is different now as the baggage hall of the transit section of the border remains empty on Wednesday.
One of the heavy truck drivers told Joy News business is dragging to a halt as some of them have not even moved any luggage for the past two weeks.
The driver who said he would have realized some GHC10,000 by now but for the political tension is hopeful that things will get better so he starts brisk business transporting load again.
The Principal Revenue Officer of the Customs Division of the GRA at the border, Godwin Kusabgo told Joy News, “Things have changed for the last two weeks as our operations have gone down.”
“They had specific days they trade with us, but as at yesterday which was the Kumasi market day, none of the big groups showed up. It was only a few of the smaller groups that came,” he said.
According to him, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays are the busy days for trading but the numbers are not encouraging lately.
He believes the traders are closely monitoring news of what is happening in Togo to inform themselves about their next move should be as they will not want to risk their lives.
According to Joy New’s Favour Nunoo who visited Togo, the situation at the border is dismal for businesses as parking and loading docks were empty as at Wednesday afternoon.
“One could see about 15 heavy duty trucks at a place which hitherto is always very full. The characteristic movement of people to and fro processing their documents is also missing.
“For the Customs officers this is quite shocking as they thought the situation from last two weeks was going to pick up, but consistently the numbers keep dropping and they are losing money,” the reporter added.