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Cocoa farmers in the Eastern region are pushing for a Rep to serve on the World Cocoa Pricing Regulatory Body aside from that of the government of Ghana Rep.

According to the Cocoa farmers having their own Colleague on the Pricing Regulatory Body would afford them the opportunity to make input when determining the World Market Price for Cocoa.

The Cocoa farmers from 9 different Districts in the Eastern Region raised this concern at a Workshop organized by Ghana Agricultural and Rural Development Journalists Association (GARDJA) at the auditorium of the University of Agricultural and Environmental Studies (UCAES) under the theme “Cocoa is the backbone of our country and its sustainability is key.”

The President of the Association Mr. Richmond Frimpong believes that inclusive governance strengthens the transparency and accountability of institutions at all levels which protect the rights of all Ghanaians.

He is worried the weak value chain linkages will not help ensure proper Cocoa Production in Ghana. “Cocoa is the backbone of our country and its sustainability is key” he said.

The President indicated that the 3rd Edition of this engagement saw farmers from Atiwa East and West, Fanteakwa South and North, Abuakwa South and North, East Akyem and New Buabeng.

Mr. Frimpong said The Ghana Agricultural and Rural Development Journalists Association is doing this as part of her contribution towards development and sustainability of Ghana’s Cocoa.

“Most of the farmers complained of selective Cocoa Mass Spraying, lack of fertilizers, inability to control pests and weeds. Some also were very much furious and saddened because their landowners connive with miners to destroy their cocoa lands for mining” he said.

Cocoa farmers from East Akyem municipality who came in their numbers also complained bitterly of the stance government and the Chief’s in their communities have taken to drive them away from their cocoa farmlands for rubber plantation rather they supposed.

On his part a lecture with the University of Agricultural and Environmental Studies (UCAES) Dr. Francis Emmanuel Awortwi believes it’s time government ensure that forest and natural resource policies respects rights of local communities, promotes development and safeguards the resources for posterity.

“Climate Change is real and farmers need more education about it, The most important thing is to stick to tested and tried Cocoa farming tips” he whispered.

Also present at the Workshop were representatives from the Ghana Forestry Commission, GARDJA, WCFO, FBO’s, Agricultural Extension Officers, Lecturers from UCAES, MoFA, and Journalists across the country.

Story by: Nana Yaw Reuben Jnr
Freelance Journalist

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