After months of agitations, thousands of angry textile workers today poured onto the streets of Accra to demand the seizure and destruction of pirated wax prints on the markets.
The charged crowd of protestors gave President Akufo-Addo one month to grant their request for an extension of the mandate of the anti-pirated textile taskforce to enable it move into the market to destroy fake prints.
Some of the strongly worded placards read; ‘Workforce previously 30,000 now 3,000’, ‘Our markets are not hideouts for pirated textiles’, ‘Stop textile pirating textiles now and protect existing factories before one district one factory’.
At the end of the long march in the principal streets of Accra, the group converged at the Hearts Park to present their petition to the Trades ministry. Their Spokesperson John Abeka warned that they will not sit aloof and watch the textile companies collapse.
“The time has come when we are not going to be spectators but citizens like the President suggested. We are saying the textile companies are not going to die. We are saying they should take off the VAT on the textile companies. We are saying the pirating and smuggling are collapsing our business. We are saying they should stop everything that they are doing and listen to us.”
The Chief Director at the Trades Ministry, Paddi Gyerakor who received the petition gave the assurance that their demands will be considered.
“On behalf of the Minster for Trade and Ministry, I assure you that we will work hard to ensure that your grievances are addressed. We have already met you on these matters this week and will continue that engagement.”
Not convinced by the response, the demonstrators have vowed to return to the streets next month if government fails to address their concerns.