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Save our souls, Nigerian traders in Ghana cry to government

Nigerian government would gladly welcome the traders back home, NiDCOM boss said.

• November 12, 2020
Nigerian traders protesting
Nigeria Union of Traders Association in Ghana (Credit: BBC)

Nigerian traders in Ghana have made a passionate appeal to the Nigerian government to rescue them from ill treatment they are facing in Ghana, asking the government to evacuate them back home.

The traders, in a Save-Our-Soul letter delivered to the the Nigerian Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), said they were seeking a secure and peaceful return to Nigeria.

A spokesman for NiDCOM Gabriel Odu said the traders belonged to two associations in Ghana, the Nigerian Union of Traders Association in Ghana (NUTAG) and the National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS).

Mr. Odu said the evacuation letter, endorsed by 753 traders in the two associations, was delivered by a delegation led by the President of NANTS, Ken Ukoaha.

In the letter, the traders explained that their evacuation had become necessary because of the constant and consistent harassments, intimidation, torture, threat to their lives and the total lockdown of their means of livelihood in Ghana.

They said that their shops had been locked up for almost one year by Ghanaian authorities.

“Diplomatic niceties at the highest level between Nigeria and Ghana have not yielded positive results.

“Landlords are coming to ask us for rent. How do we pay with our shops locked up for so long? We are dying here”, the traders lamented in the letter.

Receiving the delegation, NiDCOM Chairperson Abike Dabiri-Erewa called for peace, stressing the need for all relevant stakeholders to continually engage in peace talks.

She said it was indeed sad that the traders` shops have not been reopened for almost a year, citing Ghana’s draconian regulations which breached ECOWAS Protocols on Free Trade and the Movement of Goods and Services.

She said that the Nigerian government would gladly welcome the traders back home.

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