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Scrap business our source of livelihood – Immigrants



The immigrants, mostly from Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso, and Togo, walk from dawn till sunset to gather scrap metal that would be sold to scrapyard vendors.

Abdul Raman, a 27-year-old Nigerien who spoke to Ghana News Agency in Tema, affirmed that he had been in the industry for five years and that it was his only means of support.

“I go door-to-door looking for rusty or abandoned metal items to purchase at a reasonable cost based on their weight as determined by the weighing scale, and I then bring them to the yard to sell,” he said.

He said selling the scrap metal to the buyers at the scrapyard gave him between GHc100.00 and GHc150.00 per day.

Among other metals, the scrap comprises copper, aluminium, brass, and stainless steel. Before being weighed, these metals are separated according to their type. A kilogramme of aluminium costs GHc3.00.

“Sometimes I go to the beaches to collect some scraps by casting a net into the sea for them,” he continued.

Mr Raman said he chose to work in the scrap industry even though it was extremely difficult and negatively impacted his health to the point where he walked in the hot sun every day.

He said, “Sometimes I use the money made from selling the scraps to pay for medications”.

The scrap collector said in addition to collecting scrap metal, he also gathers broken plastic items like bowls, chairs, tables, and many others; however, before he goes to the scrapyard, everything has already been sorted.

Another scrap dealer, Mr Yusif Fuseini, claimed to carry the scrap he purchased from collectors to businesses that operated metal refineries, such as Tema Steel Works, for recycling. Welders, auto technicians, and sellers of metal plates and pipes for purchase have exclusive access to a few useful ones.

“More frequently, I use a hammer to remove scrap metal from products that contain it; occasionally, metal fragments strike my eyes, causing injury,” he said.

Mr Fuseini made it clear that he also received calls from people asking him to disassemble standard metal machines to be bought.

He claimed that “the scrap metal business for recycling makes good economic sense and thus provides one with intensive capital”.

In the home, office, manufacturing, and construction industries, he said that the metals might be recycled and reused many times to produce new goods.


Source: GNA

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