Hawkers invade Accra Art Centre, harass customers

craftsThe Traditional Cultural Kente-Adinkra Manufacturers and Sellers Association (TRACKAMSA) of the Art and Crafts Centre in Accra on Monday expressed indignation about the operations of hawkers at the Centre.

Mr. Fredrick Affum, Vice Chairman of the Association, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency said the hawkers who are mostly from Nigeria, Togo and other West African countries often stood at the entrance of the Centre and harassed people who patronized the crafts market.

They engaged European and American customers, especially, with sweet talk with the intention of luring them into buying items they (hawkers) did not actually sell.

He explained that once, the buyers became interested in the item, they (hawkers)  would run into the Craft market for the product at a cheap price and sold it at an exhorbitant  price to them,  adding that some even defrauded the unsuspecting clients.

He said though much effort had been made to get rid of the hawkers, they never seemed to leave but always came back.

He said the Association had held series of meetings with the Centre for National Culture (CNC) who are in charge of the crafts market to help resolve the operational interference. “The CNC had so far failed to sack the hawkers, so we decided to take matters into our own hands by organizing task forces to deal with the hawkers”.

Mr. Akwesi Ntiamoah, the Secretary to the Association said it was working on a more permanent measure to clamp down on the situation once and for all by fixing a Police Post at the Art Centre.

“We spoke to the Regional Commander to assist us in our quest and though it hasn’t been confirmed yet, we are hoping for a positive answer from him” he added.

A trader who gave his name as Mr. Bernard Antwi said business was not as lucrative as compared to previous years because they (traders) were more now as compared to some years ago and for one’s goods to be purchased on a daily basis, one’s prices must go low as against the prices of other traders.

The Association however is calling on government to help speed the process of creating the Police Post at the Centre to get rid of the hawkers at the Centre.

Source: GNA

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