GIFF President warns against Aflao to Akanu border move

GIFF President warns against Aflao to Akanu border move

Reports reveal the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority are finally set to fully operationalize the Ghana-Togo joint border post at Akanu-Noepe in the Volta Region.

As a result, the President of the Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders (GIFF), Eddy Akrong, has expressed dissatisfaction at the move, citing catastrophic implications to the border at Aflao, trade facilitation and revenue collection in general.

Speaking on the Eye on Port programme, Mr. Akrong cautioned government to tread cautiously with the imminent step.

According to the GIFF President, “a sharp deviation from the setup at Aflao would see a defoliation the economy of Aflao”.

He explained that what has become a booming economy at Aflao, the banks and office complexes is as a result of the border post.

Mr. Akrong stated that one other major challenge is the situation of the new joint border post.

“The problem with Akanu is that it is positioned in Togoland. The whole idea is to secure revenue, but that is a national security matter. If we decide to let everything go through there and there are any frustrations, you could see a deviation and people might want to find easier means of getting away. That is what we don’t want. We have to be careful on that front.”

“The electricity situation is also very erratic there and it gets dark at night. We are concerned about infrastructure. Are there enough offices for agents and all the other institutions to work? Also, we are using ICUMS, but they are not using the same. But we need that to work. So, are we going to commute to Aflao for documentation and come back?” the GIFF Prez quizzed.

Mr. Akrong also revealed that the weighbridges at Akanu are dysfunctional which may cause revenue leakages for cargoes whose duties are calculated based on their weight.

He added that, “the parking situation for trucks has also not been resolved.”’

The President of the Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders said due to the severe infrastructural backdrops, it may be wise to phase out the transition.

“We have to assess and see how to do this. We could start with transit because those are going out and we would not be losing revenue. But if we move everything there, it will first have an effect on Aflao. Secondly, the infrastructural challenges will not sit well with us.”

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