BH Fertagro Ghana Limited seeks court order for release of seized fertilizer
Mr Ekow Ampah Korsah, one of the lawyers, said the blended formulation of (14-23-14) was for cotton production and not for cocoa as had been alleged by officials of the Ghana Cocoa Board.
On September 17, 2022, a production warehouse of the company situated at Amanfrom near Adenta, was raided by a combined team of police and officials of Ghana Cocobod and the fertilisers were seized.
Mr Ampah Korsah said Mr Ayitey Redeemer Kotsanu, the Logistics Manager of the company together with two other persons, Mr Abdulrazak Sani and Mr Cisse Sin Ali, were arrested and the production warehouse of the company closed.
He said the team also impounded 15 articulator trucks loaded with fertilizer for export to Burkina Faso.
The Lawyer said BH Fertagro Ghana Limited, is a company registered under the laws of Ghana and engages in the importation and production of fertilizers for farming.
He said the said fertilizer loaded on the trucks was presently the subject of another application before the Court.
“That the accused persons were subsequently charged with four counts of conspiracy, stealing, attempting to smuggle and misbranding fertilizer and have all pleaded not guilty to the charges,” he added.
It is the Company’s case that the fertilizer found at the Company’s premises was not products belonging to Ghana Cocobod but rather a fertilizer which was freely available on the open market for purchase by anybody, who wished to do so.
The lawyer said it was a fact, which was well known in the Cocoa fertilizer industry, that last year Cocobod did not purchase the solid fertilizers produced and the producers had to put the same on the open market.
Mr Ampah Korsah said it was also a fact that all the Cocoa fertilizer-producing companies placed their products on the open market for sale to all buyers although the fertilizer was ordinarily branded “For Cocobod.”
“That Cocobod does not have an exclusive purchase agreement with any of the fertilizer production companies in the country,” he added.
He said Cocobod had not reported any of its fertilizer as missing and “we challenge the complainant to show where and when its warehouses have been broken into and how much fertilizer was stolen and to which police Station, they made a report of the said occurrence.”
The lawyer said the fertilizers seized from the Company’s premises were mainly the “Cocoa Aduane’ brand manufactured by Omnifert and Yara that the Company through its agents purchased from the manufacturer.
He said the fertilizer seized from the Company’s premises was purchased from the right source and not stolen as was falsely alleged.
He said BH Fertagro had a contract to supply fertilizers to an agricultural Company in Burkina Faso called CAIMA for cereal production.
It was pursuant to this that the Company purchased some cocoa fertilizer as a base to blend the cereal fertilizers for the purchasing company.
Mr Korsah said since the beginning of the case on September 19, 2022, the police had allegedly failed to test the blended fertilizer seized and had taken no steps to verify whether the Cocoa fertilizer was purchased on the open market or not.
He said BH Fertagro had already presented all its purchase waybills to the police in the verification of the fact that the fertilizer was legitimately purchased.
The lawyer prayed to the court for the re-opening of the Company’s production facility and that it would not in any way derogate from the prosecution’s case since they could not take samples of the contents of the trucks for evidential purposes if they need to.