Deputy Trade Minister, Michael Okyere Baafi

Deputy Trade and Industry Minister, Michael Okyere Baafi is convinced that the real motive of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) for closing shops is not to protest against the harsh economic conditions.

He explained that the government has shown commitment to addressing the concerns raised by GUTA throughout their several engagements. In addition, government has shown good faith and lent a listening ear to GUTA’s concerns.

The Deputy Trade and Industry Minister has, therefore, asserted that there must be another motive for their action considering the assurances by the government to address their concerns.

“That is why a lot of people think that there are other motives that we may not know, because if the motives are very clear and this motive will inure to the benefit of the country and as a government we are so committed to it…they have to tell us.

“What will be the consequence of this action that they have taken? Government’s position has been that we appreciate their problem to the point of always begging them and pleading with them to understand the situation.

“We have given out everything, we have shown good faith. We have considered some of the things, we have even made efforts to be able to take certain things they say,” he told JoyNews.

GUTA’s protest against the high cost of doing business is in its second day. GUTA said the six-day closure of shops is aimed at piling pressure on the government to act quickly.

GUTA has made it clear the shops will be reopened on Monday, October 24.

Meanwhile, the President of GUTA, Dr. Joseph Obeng has explained that the action taken was not influenced by political considerations or other motives.

“Everything is on the membership. I do not have control over them. It is something that they are feeling the pain and pinch and they want to express it…GUTA is not political…we have a problem at hand and nobody should downplay it, it will not help us,” he said.

Dr. Joseph Obeng urged the government to rather come out with measures to resolve the situation.

Meanwhile, the Traders Advocacy Group Ghana has disagreed with GUTA’s approach to getting government’s attention on the worsening economic situation in the country.

Its General Secretary, Nana Poku in an interview on Joy FM’s Top Story on Wednesday indicated that closing of shops is a thing of the past.

“Closing shops should be the last resort. I for one will say it is a thing of the past,” he stated.

According to him, his Group would resort to a diplomatic approach to get the government to act.

“We are protesting in a different way that would be a little bit diplomatic and at the end of the day face the reality by the opportunity given to us by the government, because at the end of the day, government has not closed its doors for the trading public… So we will continue to do our trading and at the same time protest in a manner that will suit our members.”

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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.