The deputy Tourism Minister, James Agyenim-Boateng, has closed down a ‘racist’ whites-only restaurant turned night club at Osu in Ghana’s capital, Accra.
Citi News confirmed the existence of the outfit on Tuesday after it broke as a rumour on social networking site facebook a couple of days ago.
The place is being run by Atlantic Lobster and Dolphins Limited and owned by two Italians, Marco Ranaldi and Salvatore D’azeo. Locals have alleged that the place accepts only whites and blacks are turned away.
According to Mr. Agyenim-Boateng, the tourism ministry decided to close down the place because it was in violation of the laws of Ghana. He added that the facility was registered to be used as a restaurant and not as a club and directed the owners of the facility to acquire the proper license to be able to run the place for that dual purpose.
“We are going to close your place down because you are in violation of our laws,” the minister said. “We want you to do what is right and proper. You have to show complete and total respect for our laws.”
“You have to go to the Ghana Tourists Authority and get this place licensed. In its current form this obviously is a restaurant, which is veiled as a club. So for now you would not be able to operate the way you have done. ”
Meanwhile, Elizabeth Okuro, a half Ghanaian-half Nigerian, who visited the club recently told Citi News that she was told in the face by the manager of the facility that she could not register as a member of the club because she is not a White.
A very furious Okuro is calling on Ghanaians to boycott Atlantic Lobster and Dolphins Limited since according to her the activities of the club smacks of racism which must not be tolerated in Ghana. She has created a facebook page to champion that cause.
She, however, added that she would consider aborting the campaign against the patronage of the place if the owner who made racial comments against her comes out to apologise.
Meanwhile, owners of the Atlantic Lobster and Dolphins Limited have denied that the club is promoting racism.
Owner D’azeo said he is married to a Ghanaian woman and cannot be deemed as a racist, adding that his comment to Elizabeth was only a joke.