Queen-Mother for Accra Brewery/CMB Market in the Greater Accra Region, Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l, aka Grace Konu Ogboo, has sounded a strong word of warning to leadership of the Tomato Traders Association in CMB under the umbrella body of the Greater Accra Tomato Traders Association to refrain from their continuous habit of intimidating and terrorizing her together with scores of tomato traders who are on her camp.
Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l stressed that failure by the Queen-mother of Tomato Traders Association in CMB,Naa Charity Otumfo and the President of Greater Accra Tomato Traders Association, Madam Lydia Afoley Anum together with their followers to stop threatening of ejecting them from the new tomatoes trading market centre in Hearts Park adjacent to the Arts Centre in Accra would incure their wrath.
Fuming with anger, the queen-mother who is also tomatoes seller, described the recent media reports with the headline” You’ll Be Banished From Hearts Park!… Recalcitrants tomato traders warned;” being attributed to Naa Charity Otumfo and Madam Lydia Afoley Anum which reads in part that the traders who goes contrary to the mandatory routine schedule for the sale of tomatoes as a complete”joke and bogus.”
She further stressed that this is absolutely cowards and useless statement, emphasizing that Naa Charity Otumfo and Madam Lydia Afoley Anum-led group were just making such warning for warning seek since their directive cannot work in the market “today and tomorrow.”
She asked that “is the Hearts Park the bonafide property of Naa Charity Otumfo, Madam Lydia Afoley Anum and their people. It is the property of government which belongs to all of us, so Naa Charity Otumfo and Madam Lydia Afoley Anum and their people are joking that they are going to banish us from there.”
Although Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l disclosed that she together with her followers were in the final stage to legally acquire the market operating permit from the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) to leave the Hearts Park and operate on their own, she stated that Naa Charity Otumfo and Madam Lydia Afoley Anum had no executive power to sack them or any tomatoes trader from the tomatoes commercial trading market at Hearts Park.
According to her, the land of Hearts Park for where the AMA and Korley Klottey Municipal Assembly have jointly relocated all traders who deal in bulk breaking of tomatoes in the Central Business District (CBD) from Agbogbloshie, CMB, Mokola, Tudu and Kwasiadwaso to sell their products in the wake of novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pademic was government acquired land.
She indicated that the beef of the Naa Charity Otumfo and Lydia Afoley Anum-led group was that when they moved them from CMB to Hearts Park they (Naa Charity Otumfo and Lydia Afoley Anum-led group) confronted her together with her followers and asked them to pay a fee of an amount of GHC 200 for each trader before they can for offload tomatoes from vehicle ti be sold in the Heart Park market.
But according to her, they refused to pay the fee charged because they didn’t seen any reason of paying such money to the Naa Charity Otumfo and Lydia Afoley Anum-led group, since they were not the members of the Tomato Traders Association in CMB.
Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l was of the view that since she together with her followers are duly paying business operating tax of GHC100 per each tomatoes trader to the AMA, they have legitimate rights to also sell their tomatoes product at the market centre in Hearts Park without being disturbed by Naa Charity Otumfo and Madam Lydia Afoley Anum.
She mentioned that the long unending rife between her and Madam Lydia Afoley Anum-led group was as a result of her outfit resistance to join the Tomato Traders Association of CMB, because the Association lacks crebility and full of corrupt personalities.
“You cannot force someone to join association without he or her will because there is freedom to join association that enshrined in the1992 Constitution;” she stated.
She pointed out that her outfit generally refused to join the Tomato Traders Association in CMB because Madam Lydia Afoley Anum-Naa Charity Otumfo led group have taken the Association as their family affairs for which they used the Association as their gold mine by way of allegedly collecting monies from the traders without making proper accounts of the proceeds.
Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l was reacting to the recent media publication for which the leadership of the Association have warned that the tomato traders who would disobey the tomatoes routine sale schedule and to go on trip to bring in tomatoes to Accra for sale, would be completely banished from the market.
In that report they cautioned that no tomato traders would be allowed to use their own power to go on the trip to bring cartons of tomatoes and offload in the new location (Hearts Park) anymore like what they have been illegally doing in their previous market centres like Mokola, CMB, Tudu Agbogbloshieand Kwasiadwaso.
They stressed that any trader who goes contrary to the directives would be dealt with the new law to serve as deterrent to others.
According to the leadership of the Association, some traders with the supreme support of Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l continued to adopt their previous inhumane practices and attitudes by way of disobeying the mandatory routine tomatoes sale schedule.
They noted that Madam Grace Konu Ogboo and her associates had been creating confusion within the tomatoes market with their claims that they were not the members of the Greater Accra Tomato Traders Association, saying that nobody can control them in the market.
They alleged that the close associates of Madam Ogboo had currently team up with other tomato sellers from different regions to bring their produce down to the market centre of Accra Hearts Park to sell, and that whenever “you confronted Madam Grace Konu Ogboo over the issue she ends up insulted everybody including the AMA officials in the market.”
“We have been informed that Madam Grace Konu Ogboo with her followers are currently selling the tomatoes at the Hearts Park on behalf of some individuals who are not members of the Greater Accra Tomato Ttraders Association.
“These recalcitrant individuals were those who were illegally going on to the trip by using their own tomatoes sale schedules and bring tomatoes and offloaded on shoukders of the streets at the CMB,” they stated.
That practice of these individuals, according to the leadership of the Association, had made tomatoes become abundant in the market, get rotten within few days and are thrown away.
But a in quick rebuttal, Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l denied allegations leveled against her to the effect that she has teamed up with other tomato sellers who not members of the Tomato Traders Association in CMB from different regions to bring their produce down to the market centre of Accra Hearts Park to sell.
According to her, all tomato traders who were in her camp have been selling the tomatoes product in the CMB before”we all being moved by AMA to Hearts Park.”
She further refute allegations of not rendering account of GHC 6, 000 from the mobilization of the money accrued from the selling of tickets for the trip of the tomato traders from Burkina Faso to Accra.
“This statement is a complete lies l have not comssumed any money belonging to the Association, My hands are clean of ‘chop chop’ of money belonging to the tomato traders.
“They were making such allegations because l have been fighting them for ensuring probity and accountability of the money they had been collecting from the traders. So they want to make such allegations just to cover up their corrupt practices,” Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l clarified.
Pix: Naa Ayikai Korle Dudor l, aka Grace Konu Ogboo, Queen-Mother for Accra Brewery/CMB Market