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Regional Minister blames NDC for stoking Kotokuraba market protest

Central Regional Minister has welcomed the decision of some Assembly Members and traders of the Kotokuraba market to proceed to court over what they describe as unfair stall distribution.

Kwamena Duncan accused the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the region of politicising with the issue.

Speaking to Kwadwo Asare Baffuor-Acheampong (KABA) on Ekosi sen on Asempa FM Monday, he explained that the current situation is because the NDC “did the distribution close to their chest and no body saw it.

Some Assembly members and traders at the Kotokuraba Market in Cape Coast in the Central region are protesting what they describe as the unfair distribution of market stalls there.

According to them, the stalls have been given to family and friends of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) whiles names of the original occupants have been deleted.

At a press conference organised on Monday, one of the Assembly members, George Justice Authur, cautioned Mr Duncan and Cape Coast MCE, Ernest Arthur, that if they do not address their initial and current concerns, they will organise a demonstration and a court action. 

He said the former MP Priscilla Korankye Arhin, submitted a list of over 500 traders to court before the redevelopment with a guarantee of stalls to those occupying it then.

Former President John Mahama in November 2016 inaugurated the newly built Kotokuraba Market, which has several shops, a bank, hospital and a school.

It also has an office block, a parking lot, eatery, a fire department, offices, a drainage system and walkways, to ensure the free movement of traders and customers.

Work on the project began in December 2014, after a court in Cape Coast ordered the demolition of the old project to make way for the Cape Coast Stadium.

Some traders had prayed the court to halt the demolition of the old market until decent structures had been provided for their relocation.

According to Joy News' Richard Kwadwo Nyarko, the Assemblymen and the traders who claim they have structures at the old market complained that they have not been given some of the stores despite a court directive to do so.

They claimed there was an agreement between them and authorities regarding the distribution of the stores.

They say excluding their names from the list amounts to economic oppression and infringe on their rights.

But the Regional Minister said, “when power changed hands we [government] has gone by the records of the Assembly, followed the details of the court and done what it asked us to do.

"That is what is being followed in the allocation and distribution of the lockable and open stalls," he added.

Mr Duncan bemoans why the NDC is still politicking when elections are long over and they need to move on to allow those in charge to deliver service to the people.