Cocoa farmers in the Wassa-Akropong and Dunkwa districts have recognized the role and efforts of Mr. Joseph Boahen Aidoo, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ghana Cocoa Board (Cocobod) for his farmer-friendly policies in the cocoa industry.
The farmers said the policies of Mr. Boahen-Aidoo have led to various innovations thereby boosting cocoa production in the country.
Mr. Kojo Tawiah, Chief Cocoa Farmer of Nsuaem No.2, disclosed this in an interview as part of the CEO's working visit to the Nsuaem No.2 and Dunkwa Western South Cocoa Region.
Mr. Tawiah said, the CEO has chalked remarkable feats in the cocoa sector and has an excellent relationship with cocoa farmers.
Earlier, some farmers were seen hoisting placards with the inscriptions such as: ‘Father of Pollination’, ‘Father of Floor Price’ and ‘Papa Cocoa’ among others.
The Chief Farmer said as an Nkosohene (Development Chief) of the town, Mr. Boahen-Aidoo has introduced farmer friendly policies such as mass pruning, hand pollination, subsidized fertilizers, pilot irrigation projects, enhanced mass spraying programmes, mass recruitment of extension officers as well as floor price and living income differential policies aimed at improving the income of cocoa farmers.
Mr. Tawiah said that such policies have increased yield and productivity thereby making cocoa farming an attractive business venture.
He also used the occasion to commend Mr. Boahen-Aidoo for his regular visits and tours as well as engagements with cocoa farmers.
Mr. Tawiah appealed to the CEO of Cocobod to ensure that all cocoa growing area roads in the districts were fixed to enable them cart their cocoa beans from the farm to the Produce Buying Center (PBC).
He said a very weak bridge linking the town and Nkumotin needed immediate repairs.
Meanwhile, Ghana Cocoa Board says its plans to raise US$1.3billion through a syndicate of banks is on course and not affected by the perceived risks associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Speaking at the launch of a $600million receivable-backed loan on Tuesday, June 23, 2020, Mr. Joseph Boahen Aidoo, the Chief Executive of COCOBOD, said the Board was currently negotiating the terms of the proposals with the Banks.
He said COCOBOD issued Requests for Proposals in February 2020 to International Banks to raise the funds for the 2020/2021 cocoa purchases.
“On the 12th of June, 2020, the financial institutions including; COCOBOD’s traditional Banks submitted their proposals,” he said, adding that evaluation of the proposals was held on 18th June 2020 by an in-house committee with representatives from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Ghana.
Also, COCOBOD received the first installment of $200 million out of $600 million dollars from a syndicated loan facility it signed with a consortium of development finance institutions at the launch.