The first Women Conference in Ghana under the theme ‘Empowering Market Women for Economic Prosperity’ came to a close yesterday at the forecourt of the State House.
The traders used the platform as an opportunity to state their grievances on the poor conditions and standard of the markets they sell their food stuff.
Although they were impressed with the initiative aimed at empowering them socially and economically through various training programmes, some of them are suffering because their markets are not equipped with basic amenities and the location of the marketplaces do not favour them.
“Many market women are suffering because they do not have stalls to store their food stuff. They are left with no option than to leave them in the open so when it rains heavily, some food items are destroyed causing loss of money,” one trader told GhanaWeb.
Another from Aflao in the Volta Region added “we have to carry our food stuff with the help of a truck to the market and go through the same process back home because there are not enough stalls to keep our goods. It gets exhausting so we are pleading with the government to come to our aid.”
Even though the Ministry of Gender and Social Protection, Honourable Nana Oye Lithur emphasized that market women play a key role in the development of the country, the traders maintained that the government should consult them or find out the situation, as shareholders, before constructing or developing the market where they sell their products.
“The conference is good but our worry is that market women are not consulted on which part of an area a market should be constructed. Some of us end up selling by the roadside which is inappropriate so the best is to discuss with our leaders before carrying on with a project.”
Market women from different markets in the ten regions of the country came in their numbers to grace the conference hosted by the First Lady, Mrs Lordina Mahama, who promised to engage market women and the local government at the economic level.