The Ghana National Tomato Traders and Transporters’ Association, has stressed that until their issues are addressed they will not import tomatoes into the country in the foreseeable future.
This is as a result of the recent robbery attacks on traders on the Bolgatanga-Tamle highway where some drivers and traders were injured and killed by unknown gunmen.
The National Chairman Eric Osei Tuffuor, in an interview with an Accra-based Citi Business News, lamented that it is very devastating and traumatizing for traders to go through this ordeal.
“We’ve done so many press conferences and we are waiting for a response. If that is not done, we’ve taken a decision to park our vehicles. Tomatoes will never come to our country. We’ve started it and every Ghanaian will see it because there will be a shortage of tomatoes in our local market. Anyone who will be found crossing the border with a truck of tomatoes will be punished by the Association.” He said.
He explained that they are very much concerned about their lives and only need protection on the highways on their way to transact trade for the benefit of the country.
“Unless we hear from the appropriate leaders we won’t import. The only thing that we want is protection. The authorities need to protect us. We need police assistance. We’ve written letters to the authorities and it’s up to them to contact us so we sit down and find solutions to our problems,” he exclaimed.
However, the strike began on Sunday, February 7, 2021, and according to the Association, the silence of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and other authorities on robbery attacks on their members on the various routes was what propelled them to embark on the strike.
So far, seven members of the Association have been robbed and shot in less than three weeks while returning from Burkina Faso, leading to the death of two drivers.