The Ghana Police Service has assured tomato traders of maximum police-military escort but the striking traders have vowed to call off the strike when all the promises are fulfilled.
The Inspector-General of Police through the Ashanti Regional Police Command has assured tomato traders and transporters of police and military escort to protect them against highway robbery.
This is in response to a petition by the traders following persistent attacks on the Kumasi-Bolgatanga-Burkina Faso route, leading to the death of some members.
At least 6 traders have died in highway attacks while they were en route to Burkina Faso to buy tomatoes, a situation that compelled the association to embark on a strike to drum home their frustration.
Although the traders are yet to call off their strike, the Ashanti Regional Deputy Police Commander, David Agyemang Adjem, addressed the striking tomato transporters and importers in Kumasi.
“Security patrols will be intensified on the Kumasi-Bolgatanga-Burkina Faso route to curb the violent highway attacks,” he said, adding: “The IGP has instructed me to address you and assure you of intense military escorts henceforth to ward off criminals who have been robbing and killing you in your line of work.”
The Deputy Police Commander, however, further cautioned the traders against keeping cash on them.
Chairman of the Tomato Transporters and Exporters Association lauded the move by the police to protect them.
Eric Osei Tuffour, however, said the traders will call off the industrial action when their request is fully granted.
“We are grateful for the assurance but we will not relent in our strike. We will call it off when the promises are fulfilled when the police and military escorts are manifested.”
Mr. Tuffour added that the Association is finding ways to help its members from traveling with physical cash.