Government asked to prevent destruction of cocoa farms

Mr Ohene Boafo, President of West Akim Co-operative Cocoa Farmers and Marketing Union, has called on government to pass a law that prevents the destruction of cocoa farms in the country.

He expressed worry about the excessive destruction of cocoa farms for rubber plantation and illegal activities, which affected the environment and the livelihood of the communities.

Speaking to the Ghana News Agency at a media outreach programme in Atta ne Atta (Asamankese) in the Eastern Region, on the sustainability of cocoa sector in the country, Mr Boafo said legislation against the destruction of cocoa farms would help secure the lands to increase cocoa production.

The programme was organised by Mondelez International Cocoa Life.

He expressed concern at the way and manner some chiefs and landowners forced cocoa farmers to sell out their cocoa farmlands for illegal mining and rubber plantation.

Mr Boafo said these practices were unacceptable because they were serious threat to cocoa production in the country as well as affected the water bodies and farmlands.

He commended Mondelez International cocoa life for empowering cocoa farmers to adopt good agricultural practices in the country.

He said he used to harvest two bags of cocoa per hectors but with education received from cocoa life, he was able to harvest four bags of cocoa.

Mr Boafo said under the cocoa life project, cocoa farmers were presented with hybrid cocoa seedlings, spraying machines, bicycles to improve upon their operations with the aim to increase production.  

Mr Boafo commended government for instituting a taskforce against illegal mining, saying the initiative would help curb the phenomenon which had affected the production of cocoa.

He urged government to work with key stakeholders in the cocoa sector and non-governmental organisations including international donor communities to minimise the destruction of cocoa farms by activities of illegal miners.

He urged Ghanaians to stop the habit of destroying cocoa farmlands for gold mining activities.

Mrs Vida Martey Meiley, President of Peace and Unity Pastries has commended Mondelez International cocoa life for empowering the women in Nankese Ningo in the Eastern region in entrepreneurial skills.

She said under the project, women in the community were taught in financial literacy, trained in bakery and pastry services to be self-employed to complement efforts in household’s duty.

Source: GNA

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