Large quantities of cheap imported fabrics with imitated designs, trademarks or brand have been seized at the Kumasi Central Market by the National Anti-piracy Textile Taskforce.
Mr John Kwesi Amoah, a member of the Taskforce, told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the arrests were part of efforts to protect the local textiles industry and curb the rising piracy, restore sanity and grow the nation’ textile manufacturing companies, and that, offending dealers would be prosecuted.
Many cloth sellers were, however, furious at the exercise, saying that, they had been treated unfairly.
Some said they had done nothing wrong and could not be blamed for the woes of the local manufacturers.
Mr Kwabena Mensah Bonsu, the Deputy Organizer of the Central Market Cloth Traders Association, said their members as retailers, bought their supplies from wholesalers and could not be responsible for the piracy claim.
He said it is important for the textile industry to do an internal investigation, as the theft of their designs were being facilitated from within.
Mr Bonsu said he found it difficult to comprehend how the imitated goods found its way into the system, saying that, if industry is serious about tackling the illegal trade in textiles, “they should look at the Ghana-Togo border”.
Another trader, who did not want to be identified, spoke against the situation where the local textile companies sell their products to both retailers and customers at the same price.
This, the trader claimed, did not provide any incentive for the retailers to trade in their goods and called for a second look at their pricing policy. GNA