By Rachel Kakraba
President of the Ghana Union of Traders Association, GUTA, Dr. Joseph Obeng, has made an urgent call to the Energy Commission to meet with the leadership of Concerned Second Hand Dealers Association of Ghana, to fashion out appropriate measures to regulate the sector. He said any policy to ban electronic appliances may have dire consequences on the livelihood of dealers and the economy at large, a situation which calls for reconsideration.
Dr. Obeng was speaking at a media briefing organized by the Concerned Second Hand Dealers Association of Ghana in Accra.
The Energy Commission recently hinted at plans to embark on an exercise to tackle the importation of second-hand electrical appliances better known as home-used products, as Ghana has become a dumping ground for second-hand items. But the group says home used appliances do not pose any form of threat to the country, but rather create jobs for thousands of Ghanaians.
The News Conference is the second to be organized by the group after what it described as an unsuccessful attempt to meet the Energy Commission for further deliberations. Members of the Association, which include those from Kumasi, joined their counterparts in Accra to register their displeasure over the intention to ban used electronics.
Members who wore mostly red said a ban of the products will further worsen the economic situation of the country.
It was a charged atmosphere minutes before the leadership of the group addressed the media.
Chairperson of the Association, Daniel Asare, said their checks on sale of home used items revealed it is a standard practice the world over and wondered why not Ghana.
He said a major concern raised by the Energy Commission is regulation and asked the Commission to channel its energies to that area.
President of GUTA, Dr. Joseph Obeng said the newness of a product does not necessarily make it quality, adding that consumers are best placed to make such determination.
He was hopeful the second-hand market will continue to thrive even in the face of challenges and encouraged dealers to deal in only quality products.
The ban on the importation of second-hand products which initially covered two products has been revised to cover 17 other products such as computers, electric kettles, industrial fans, microwave ovens, rice cookers, washing machines, Solar panel television sets and monitors among other products.
The group said the charge is for all Ghanaians to rise and add their voice to ensure the policy is not implemented.