Study on the problems faced by women traders on the Abidjan-Lagos corridor

On 25 and 26 April, Lomé hosted a study on the problems faced by shopkeepers on the Abidjan-Lagos corridor. Trafficking, theft, sexual harassment, rotting of goods, are the daily lot of women who trade between Nigeria and Côte d'Ivoire.

Trading along the coastline between Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire is very difficult for women, with significant economic losses. This is revealed by a study on the problems faced by traders in the Abidjan Lagos Corridor. "There are women who are in the business of relay," explains Faridath Atchabi Aboudou, researcher at the laboratory of regional analyzes and social expertises. Many difficulties: "they often do not have transport and are at the mercy of the carriers," she said.

Among the difficulties identified were theft and sexual harassment according to a victim survey. "It is in the night that we take the baggage, and we are not safe," says Jeannette Adjassou, a fruit and vegetable trader between Togo and Benin. "We see rapes and robberies, we remain between women but we suffer the violence," she confides.
Very often, women get scammed by paying taxes that they should not pay according to Florent Kpatindé, a commercial information specialist at the Borderless Alliance. Women traders also submitted their grievances and recommendations.

"We want mechanisms to be put in place to simplify the formalities at the borders. Messages with a rather flexible vocabulary and images to facilitate understanding even for traders who can not read or write," they asked. The reality is far from the free movement of people and goods, as much vaunted by the leaders of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

Kayi Lawson, correspondent in Lomé

Source: wildaf

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Information, communication and advocacy for the elimination of barriers to regional trade in West Africa.

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