The project is a multi-purpose, ultra-modern museum with the concept that shows the upstream and downstream operations of the cocoa industry and would all be built under one roof.
Mrs Afeku said the $3 million project was expected to immortalise the late Tetteh Quarshie who first sowed the cocoa seeds and commercialised the plantation of cocoa into a cash crop in Ghana and since then the crop had been a major foreign income earner for the country.
She said the sod cutting was coming at the hills of the international cocoa day, where the president made a strong point for Ghanaians to consume cocoa and patronise it, thus promote cocoa consumption.
She said the people of the area had also asked for something to immortalise the son who brought the cocoa pod, and the Ministry as a policy decided that the best way to push the president’s agenda was to ensure that there was a museum like a chocolate factory.
The sector minister noted that the museum when completed would be an iconic and game changer in transforming the rural farming town of Mampong into a vibrant international tourism destination of choice.
“It’s best to add value to our cocoa since we are the second largest producers of cocoa in the world. To have a place where young people will come through to have interactive sessions, reading about Tetteh Quarshie, experiencing the pod, walking through the farm and seeing the value chain, how it is processed, dried and to the final or end product.”
Mrs Afeku noted that the museum, would also provide jobs for the people in the area, and the value chain that would create the economic activities, but the most important thing for the ministry was reiterating the president’s vision of adding value to cocoa in the country.
She expressed appreciation to COCOBOD, the Ghana Tourism Authority, the chiefs and people of Mampong for their support so far and urged other stakeholders to come on board to help realise the dream of the president, for the good of the nation.
The Chief of Akuapem Mampong, Osabarima Kwame Otu Darte III, said the occasion was a great one for the people of Akuapem, since government had recognised the efforts of the son of their land, and has decided to honour him.
He said in 1879, Tetteh Quarshie brought Cocoa to their land and was given a place to plant the seed, it has taken this long for all to recognise his efforts to the nation.
He assured that the people of Akuapem Mampong, were solidly behind government in the construction of the museum, so that it would be beneficial to all as a nation and however appealed to government to see to it that the project was not one that would stop along the line, but would ensure that it completed as expected.
Mr Hussein Fahkry, the Architect for the project said the museum was going to be a facility that would inspire the new generation, serve as an economic booster, where people can know more about Tetteh Quarshie and the cocoa industry in Ghana, , the impact of the plant, and also a motivational place, thus contain both entertainment and education.