General Secretary of Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA), Alpha Shaban, has noted that Nigeria’s refusal to open its borders to enable trading activities has flouted the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) protocol rules.
His comments follows Nigeria’s failure to announce the reopening of its border on January 31, 2020.
According to him, the gesture taken by Nigeria has vindicated his outfit’s position that ECOWAS protocol does not supersede national law.
Nigeria's government was expected to open its border to Ghana and neighbouring countries due to Africa Continental Free Trade agreement but upon several talks with presidents and stakeholders, the case remains unresolved.
Speaking on the issue with GhanaWeb, Mr Shaban, sounding not too concerned about Nigeria’s decision to keep their borders closed said “we have the ECOWAS protocol which allows free movement of goods and services and then if they are key in this thing it is not for GUTA and to talk about. That is why we are saying that our position has been vindicated”.
Respecting their decision to keep their borders closed, he however, called on the Akufo-Addo-led government to follow the footsteps of Nigeria by equally not opening Ghana’s borders to foreign nationals, especially Nigerians to come in to trade.
Last year, Nigeria closed its borders to Benin and other neighbouring countries, including Ghana as part of measures to help curb the frequent smuggling of low standard goods and weapons into the country.
Their decision had an adverse impact on trade in West Africa to the extent that perishable goods went bad causing financial loss to traders.
Other traders devised unlawful ways of getting their goods entering into Nigeria.
Though government of Ghana promised to compensate affected traders who had their goods locked up at Nigeria, traders are yet to receive their due.