Sunyani Market Women Sue Assembly Over World Bank Project


SOME MARKET women who trade their wares at the Sunyani Nana Bosoma Market, otherwise known as ‘Abro-dzom’ (Maize Market), are resisting attempt by the Sunyani Municipal Assembly and the Sunyani Traditional Council to eject them from their present location without compensation.

The move, according to the assembly and the Traditional Council authorities, is to give way for construction of a new market complex being funded by the World Bank.

The women have, therefore, sued the authorities at the Sunyani High Court over the decision to move them without compensation after they have expended huge sums of money on their shops.

The case, which was to be heard last Friday, was adjourned to July 16, 2024. This is to allow the trial judge to study the docket.

The women, numbering over 54 and known as Nana Bosoma Market Container Traders Association, represented by Benedicta Sunoma, Evelyn Nyantakyiwaa and Margaret Agyei as the plaintiffs, are seeking the court to rule in their favour that the authorities allocate them a new place to move to temporarily, give them transfer grant to move their containers, as well as be given first option of market stores after completion of the new market stores.

This is because they have been trading there for ages and do pay market tolls to the assembly, stressing that the Traditional Council took rent from them covering the land.

According to the market women, some members of the Sunyani Traditional Council (Nifahene, Jantuahemaa and Nana Adom Manu) under the directive of the late Omanhene of Sunyani, Nana Bosoma Asor Nkrawire II in 2019 asked them to pay GH¢5,000 each for him to construct containers for them to trade their wares at the present location.

According to Benedicta Sunoma, speaking on behalf of her colleagues at the court premises after the case was adjourned,  the said GH¢5,000 was made up of allocation of the land on which the containers were situated and GH¢4,000 for the actual construction of the containers.

“This we paid and just recently they brought the containers and some of us have even completed fixtures. They only brought the moulded container and ourselves have done roofing, wiring, ceiling, painting and tiling, making us incur further cost.

“All of a sudden the queen of Sunyani Nana Akosua Dua Asor Brayie II on January 18, this year, summoned us to the palace and asked us to move the containers to wherever we wish without giving us a place to relocate.

“The Traditional Council is also not ready to compensate us for the debt we incurred,” they disclosed to the paper.

According to the women, the Traditional Council also failed to give them a right of reply during the engagement at the palace when they were invited.

The Traditional Council, however, disclosed that the land has been leased to the Municipal Assembly for redevelopment into a modern market, so they should move else they would be moved with force.

The market women said they reported the case to police to intervene, and the security agents tried to mediate with the assembly for amicable settlement in the presence of a lawyer.

But the Municipal Chief Executive of the Sunyani Municipal Assembly, Ansu Kumi, failed to commit to their demand that they should be given a place to relocate, given transfer grant and finally after the new market is completed they should be given the first option to come back.


FROM Daniel Y Dayee, Sunyani