Members of the National Food Suppliers Association spent the night at the premises of the National Food Buffer Stock Company (NAFCO) on July 4 to press home their demands for payment of their over two years’ arrears for food supplies made to various schools.
The suppliers, who had come from different parts of Ghana, besieged the premises of NAFCO on Tuesday in an attempt to drum home their demands, but their efforts were unsuccessful.
At 10:00 pm on July 4, a Citi News crew visited NAFCO premises and saw the suppliers lying on the floor as a sign of protest.
A spokesperson for the NAFCO, Kwaku Amedume, reiterated that members of the group would continue their picketing on July 5.
He called on the government to pay their arrears, as they are being chased by their creditors from their homes.
According to him, their situation has become a serious national security issue that requires immediate attention.
“We no longer have peace in our homes. Our homes have been taken over by creditors, and we seem to have found a place here [Buffer Stock Company]. As you can see, most of them are sleeping like they’ve never slept before. This shows the kind of trauma they go through in their own beds.
“We are only appealing to the government. It is not our intention to embarrass the government in power. However, this is a serious national security issue because it threatens their very existence, the essence of their being. That is why we are appealing to the government.
“The government should turn its attention to these people. They are really going through a lot. For over two years, the painful thing is that when the government got the money, NAFCO decided to work with a different set of people. We started free SHS with the government when the government didn’t have a penny.”
He said the government has failed on several occasions to pay them their dues.
“In 2021, they sat us down and made us supply on credit. At the end of the year, they only paid a fraction of what we supplied. We didn’t mind, but in 2022, we demanded money for 2021, but they didn’t listen to us. They told us to continue to supply and that they would pay us. For the entire year of 2022, we supplied foodstuffs to the NFSC without taking a dime,” he complained.
He said they will continue to sleep at the NAFCO office until they receive payments.
“The only solution is for us to get our money. Otherwise, we will continue to be here,” he said.