Date: February 10, 2020
Just to eke-out something for a living, about 5 women from Lipleme in the Sissala West District of the Upper West Region have resorted to chippings extraction business under the burning sun due to lack of jobs.
The women were spotted using hammers to hit against big rocks to break them into smaller pieces for sale.
They told RadfordFm news Araphat Dimah that they had no other option than to trek daily to the rocky area located on the outskirts of Gwollu, the district capital, to crack the rocks to make chippings and sell it to buyers who, according to them, are however rare to get.
They lamented over lack of opportunities at this part of the country during dry seasons to keep them engaged ahead of the next rainy season, compelling them with no other choice than to sit in the scorching sun to make and sell chippings to look after their children.
Speaking to them in an interview, a 45-year-old Karim Lardy says “I have been working here for the past three years. I have been able to do the chipping business to take care of my ward to complete senior high school and others at the basic level”.
She continued and said, “the work is very hazardous to our health but our needs are numerous so that’s why we have come here to do this rather than idling”.
Meanwhile, checks by RadfordFm show that as a result of the usage of harmers, scars and bruises were all over their fingers as well as hardened palms.
Madam Karim Lardy also indicated that it takes each of them a week to make a heap of chippings selling for 80.00 cedis (negotiable).
Checks by RadfordFm again, however, revealed that some of the heaps gathered about weeks ago were yet to be sold as potential buyers were not coming around.
Another woman Madam Havamie, 70, stated that although it is hard they prefer making the chippings to begging for alms.
She, however, bemoaned delays in getting people to come and buy the chippings.
They have therefore appealed particularly, to authorities to intervene to create job opportunities in remote areas especially during dry seasons to at least engage them in a much-dignified way other than what they have resorted to.
Some big rocks the rural women crack using hands and simple tools to extract chippings for sale.