By CHIBUZOR EMEJOR.
National Association of Nigerian Traders [NANTS] has warned that it would no longer wait and watch the continued closure of shops owned by Nigerians transacting businesses in Ghana.
At a media briefing on Thursday in Abuja, Barr. Ken Ukaoha, National President of NANTS, threatened that traders under the umbrella of the association might be forced to retaliate the harassment, intimidation and discrimination being meted out to Nigerians doing businesses in Ghana.
It would be recalled that recently NANTS members have staged a protest in Abuja over the attacks and closure of over 400 shops owned by Nigerians in Ghana.
During the peaceful protest at the headquarters of the ECOWAS Commission in Abuja, the traders blocked the entrance gate of the Commission which prevented visitors from gaining entry and partially paralysed the activities of the Commission.
Traders, who were angered over the alleged passivity and apathy of the ECOWAS Commission to resolve the age-long harassment, intimidation and discriminatory attitude meted out to Nigerian businessmen resident in Ghana, called for the immediate intervention of ECOWAS.
Addressing newsmen at the rally, Mr. Ken Ukaoha, President of NANTS, strongly condemned the harassment, intimidation and repeated threats handed down to Nigerian citizens transacting business in Ghana.
Ukaoha who bemoaned the inhuman and discriminatory treatment given to thousands of Nigerian men, women and children by Ghanaian authorities, called for urgent action to reverse the ugly situation.
The President of NANTS who went down the memory lane said the attacks on Nigerians transacting businesses in Ghana began in 2007, noting that this age-long attacks and harassment has continued unabated.
He regretted that in spite of the assurances given by Ghanaian President when he met with Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly recently, the harassment and closure of Nigerian-owned businesses in Ghana has persisted till now.
According to him, “We don’t understand the reasons Nigerians living in Ghana should be treated like animals.
“We don’t understand while the attack should be heading to xenophobic attacks. We don’t understand what Ghanaian authorities and her people are gaining by maltreating Nigerians.
“Over 400 shops owned by Nigerians have been closed for several months now. The livelihoods of the people have been locked up for no just cause.”
“The water has gone beyond where we can shallow, even though that Nigerian government has been working to resolve the issue diplomatically.
“We are fed-up. We have been pushed to the wall. We will take some reactive steps, nobody should hold us accountable.
“There are about two million Ghanaians are living in Nigeria. We can retaliate. We can act,” he warned.