Ghana rejects allegations of maltreating Nigerians

The Nigerian government has levelled ten allegations against the Government of Ghana, but these have been rebuffed in a strong-worded statement

The government has refuted accusations made by Nigerian government regarding the harassment of its citizens (Nigerians) in Ghana. The accusations stem from the closure of shops belonging to foreigners who are involved in retail trading in Ghana.

In a statement, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, Minister of Information, said allegations that the country was targeting Nigerian citizens were not only inaccurate, but unjustified. 

“Any protests, decisions or actions based on these reports will, thus, be unjustified,” the statement said.

“We are obliged, therefore, as a first step, to provide our counterparts, as well as the Ghanaian and Nigerian public, with a more reflective account of events, even as we pursue substantive diplomatic engagements to resolve matters.”

Nigeria’s accusations

The Federal Republic of Nigeria made ten accusations against the Ghana government, alleging deliberate harassment of its citizens.

The oil-producing nation cited an incident earlier this year in which a Nigerian mission property, located at No 10 Barnes Road, in Accra, was seized.

The country also complained about the demolition of the Nigerian mission’s property at No 19/21 Julius Nyerere Street, East Ridge, Accra, describing it as a grave breach of the Vienna Convention.

Nigeria also alleged that 825 Nigerians were aggressively and incessantly deported from Ghana between January 2018 and February 2019.

The country further accused the Ghanaian media of an agenda against Nigerian citizens living in Ghana, claiming harsh and biased trials against judicially convicted Nigerians.

Calls for engagement

In his statement, the Information Minister said the allegations against the Ghana government were a misrepresentation of the facts.

He noted that Ghana is committed to maintaining its relations with Nigeria and other neighbouring countries; he called for engagement, therefore, between the two countries.

“Ghana remains committed to the maintenance of warm relations with all sister nations, particularly, for well-known historical reasons, with the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and will proceed to engage the Federal Government of Nigeria to resolve [these matters] comprehensively and exhaustively,” Oppong Nkrumah said.

The minister equally denied an allegation of harsh deportations of Nigerians, saying: “This statement is not factual. In 2019, 700 Nigerians, who were found to have been involved in criminal activities such as fraud, prostitution, armed robbery etc, were deported.”

He added: “Ghana’s courts, at all material times, function independently, and with strict respect for the laws of Ghana, regardless of the nationalities of accused persons.

“Judges neither convict nor sentence with a bias for or against nationalities. Nigerians and Ghanaians convicted for same offences are not treated differently.”

E A Alanore

Asaase Radio 99.5 – tune in or log on to broadcasts online.
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