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26.01.2005 Regional News

Tema Station Traders Association appeals to AMA for support

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Accra, Jan. 26, GNA - Members of the Tema Station Traders Association, who lost their goods in a fire disaster on Tuesday, have appealed to the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) to come to their aid. The affected traders, who made the appeal through the GNA on Wednesday, said AMA's statement that they were not qualified for compensation because they squatters had traumatised them.

Mr Stephen Anyan, Secretary of the Association, said none of the affected traders was a squatter, as they were lawful tenants at the station and honoured all their tax obligations to the AMA. He said a former AMA Chief Executive, Mr N. Amarteifio gave the place to them to occupy on a temporary basis with the promise of transferring them to an upgraded urban market.

"For more than 10 years now, that promise has not been fulfilled," Mr. Anyan said.

Madam Monica Biney, a Member of the Association, said AMA collected a daily tax of 700 cedis from every trader, an annual licence fee of 25,000 cedis and basic rate of 1,000 cedis annually.

"Why do they collect this money if they know our operations at this station are unauthorised?"

A fierce fire, which started around 0350 hours on Tuesday, at the Station destroyed goods worth millions of cedis.

The fire, which cause is yet to be ascertained, burnt most of the wooden stalls where traders sold their wares and three ware houses. It took the Ghana National Fire Service more than four hours to bring the fierce fire under control.

Items destroyed in the fire included second-hand clothes, shoes, foodstuff, electrical and electronic goods and hairdressing salons.

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