By Udora Orizu
The Nigeria-Ghana Business Council and the Nigeria Union of Traders Association Ghana (NUTAG) have commended the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, for his intervention in the dispute between the traders and the government of Ghana.
Members of the Nigeria-Ghana Business Council through their President, Omoba Ademiluyi, said that the Speaker’s visit to Ghana has made positive impact and paved the way for an amicable resolution to the trade dispute.
In a letter of appreciation and commendation dated September 5 and addressed to Gbajabiamila, the council said: “It is on record that your trip brought about the highest involvement of both governments in this dispute that has been on since 2007. Your proposals and presentations have given rise to two very vital solutions to the problem. The review of the GIPC Act demanding $1,000,000 deposit for foreign investors in Ghana as it concerns Nigerians. The promotion of the Nigeria-Ghana Business Council backed by legislation to superintend on trade and business issues between the two countries.
“Our objectives and activities align with the proposal which is being introduced to superintend trade issues of the two countries. It is, therefore, our wish to express support for the formation of this council and request that we work with your team to see to a successful emergence of a government-backed Business Council.”
On its part, NUTAG in another letter dated September 6, said that Gbajabiamila’s visit and engagement with the Ghanaian authorities were timely and a right step in the right direction.
In the letter, signed by the association’s President, Chief Chukwuemeka Nnaji, NUTAG urged the Speaker not to despair in ensuring that resolutions reached during the interface are implemented by all concerned parties.
Nnaji, however, stated that a lot of Nigerian traders in Ghana are finding things difficult as their means of livelihood have been shut down.
The traders appealed to the Nigerian Government to engage with the Ghanaian Government to reopen the said shops pending an enduring solution to the impasse.
According to the letter, “Your Excellency, please, allow me to seize this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart on behalf of the Nigerian Union of Traders Association of Ghana (NUTAG), for your kind, responsible and timely intervention to quell the much travails we have been experiencing at the hands of Ghanaian authorities and our Ghanaian counterpart, Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA).
“Sir, the leadership of NUTAG and all Nigerian traders in Ghana, as well as other Nigerians living in Ghana, deeply appreciate your recent visit to Ghana in order to try and resolve the lingering trade impasse between Ghana and Nigeria; in unison, we hail this as the right step in the right direction.
“The move at once displays that the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria led by His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari has all Nigerian citizens very close at heart, both at home and abroad. We are indeed very grateful to you and the entire team who embarked on this journey, and we are optimistic that an end to our travails in Ghana is at hand.”