Tension is building in Suame Magazine in Kumasi, the Ashanti regional capital, following the closure of some foreign owned spare parts shops by aggrieved members of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA).
A group of well built men popularly referred to as machomen contend that GUTA has no right to lock shops of foreigners trading in the artisanal hub hence their decision to unlock all shops closed by the GUTA Suame Magazine Taskforce.
The timely intervention of the Suame Police command managed to avert possible clashes between GUTA taskforce members and the local group of machomen fighting for the interest of the Nigerian traders.
GUTA members in Ashanti region over the years have been fighting Nigerian traders particularly in Suame Magazine, Adum and Alabar for engaging in illegal retail activities contrary to ECOWAS trade rules for foreigners.
Successive and the current government’s failure to resolve the local traders’ concerns in the trade sector has compelled the GUTA members to fight for their right by locking up shops belonging to the foreigners.
Three days after closure of the shops operated by foreigners trading in spare parts among others goods by GUTA members in Kumasi in Central Business District and Suame Magazine, a group of Machomen in the morning emerged in Suame Magazine to unlock shops locked by GUTA Taskforce members.
The GUTA taskforce members again locked the shops in response creating tension and fear among the two local groups.
However, the timely intervention of police in Suame managed to calm the two groups down.
Meanwhile, the local machomen fighting for the interest of the Nigerians explained that the action of the GUTA members against the foreigners must not be entertained.
According to the group, the closure of the Nigerians spare parts shops will breed hunger among Ghanaian employees working for the foreigners as shop keepers hence their action.