A special presidential taskforce will from August 10 begin an authentication exercise of all retail and wholesale shops owned by foreigners across the country.
The taskforce made up of personnel from the Ghana Immigration Service, Ghana Union of Traders Associations (GUTA), the Registrar-General’s Department and the trades ministry will begin phase one of the exercise in the Greater-Accra, Eastern, Western and Ashanti regions.
Speaking to ABC news, Head of Communications at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Prince Boakye-Boateng said the team will check if goods sold by the foreigners meet the right standards, if they have resident permits and business operating permit.
According to Mr Boakye-Boateng, the foreigners have been given enough time to ensure they acquire all the necessary documents before the exercise begins.
“A committee has been set up to monitor the implementation of the GIPC Act, which is to ensure that foreigners do not engage in retail business,” he stated, adding that they have to do the right thing – they need documentation to stay.
He however reiterated that GUTA has no right to lock shops belonging to foreigners like they have been doing, saying that they have not been given the mandate to do that.
Some members of GUTA recently clashed with Nigerian traders operating illegally at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, despite directive for them to remain closed until they provide legal documents.
The scuffle once again was about the infiltration of foreigners into Ghana’s retail business, which by law is a reserve of only Ghanaians and foreigners with proper documentation.
GUTA President, Dr. Joseph Obeng in an interview explained that the action of his members was due to a planned demonstration, which was postponed.
The cancellation of the demonstration came after GUTA executives met with the Trades Ministry to deliberate on the matter, which is raising tension in the country.