This year’s international trade fair is scheduled to be held from February 28 to March 7, but the dilapidated state of the International Trade Fair Centre summarises how backward we have been in a lot of respects in our national life.
Years of neglect, coupled with its proximity to the sea, has led to the sprawling facility becoming a fading shadow of its former glorious self.
Back in the day, particularly in the 1960s and 1970s, the Trade Fair site was the place to be during the annual trade fairs, and countries trooped in with various manufactured goods to display.
It was a good forum for enhancing trade relations and striking deals. Children were particularly excited during such fairs, since they presented a perfect opportunity for a family outing and there were so many attractions to keep them happy and occupied.
Today the Trade Fair Site is a pale shadow of its former self, and almost every structure there is in a state of disrepair.
According to the current CEO, Dr. Agnes Adu, there are moves to pull down the structures that have deteriorated beyond repair to make the facility presentable once again.
The place is now being used to host church services, something that the site was not constructed to do.
Hopefully, the measures being announced by the management will not be a flash in the pan.
Revamping the facility is important, especially in an era when government is moving from the dispensation of aid to trade, with the focus on making Ghanaian enterprises viable enough to compete on the global market to boost the country’s foreign reserves.
In this endeavour, hosting international trade fairs becomes an important activity. However, these international forums cannot be held under structures that can collapse on people and goods with the least exertion of pressure on them.
As we restore the Trade Fair site to its former glory, we must also endeavour to desist from showcasing non-essentials like used clothes and shoes. We need to exhibit quality manufactured goods and appliances.