The Cocoa Health and Extension Division of Ghana Cocoa Board has on Wednesday, 26/10/2020 organized a one-day training for all Extension Staff in the Hohoe-Kpeve District of the Volta Cocoa Region on Environmental and Social Management Systems(ESMS) at Hohoe. ESMS is in line with COCOBOD objective of ensuring the operationalization of all Productivity Enhancement Programs.
In a well-organized detailed plan, Mr. Noel Ayibor, the Regional Extension Officer said Environmental and Social Management Systems(ESMS) committees will be set up from Society level, District level, Regional Level and at National level. He added that the ESMS committees will have the responsibilities to adopt Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) as modus operandi in resolving issues (problems) and ensure all protocols at their disposal are exhausted before referrals. He stated a maximum of five working days to resolve a dispute and if unresolved, the case is referred to District level ESMS committee in that order.
He added that, the ESMS is to help address grievances among farmers and farming communities especially on the ongoing Cocoa Productivity Enhancement Programmes( PEPs)-i.e pollination, pruning, fertilizer application, irrigation and Cocoa Rehabilitation. He stated that, after the training, each Extension Staff must go to composite the ESMS Committee at the Society/Community level and report on it appropriately.
Mr. Ayibor however cautioned Staff that, the ESMS mandate doesn’t include resolving issues of land litigation. “Our interest is the Cocoa, and not who owns the land” he stated.
Mr. Prince Ohene Ampofo, the Regional PEP Coordinator worked through the Work Plan of Implementation of Farmer Group Resolution Management (FGRM). He taught extension Staff on how to Prepare Report on the ESMS to their District Officers.
The District Cocoa Officer, Mr. Emmanuel Ofori admonished Extension Staff to continue their sensitization on Treatment and Rehabilitation (IT), encouraged Extension Staff to update and keep up-to-date data on of all Farmer Groups and Cooperatives in their Operational Area as well as submit distribution of CODAPEC Chemical Distribution data to FGs.
The meeting was graced by the Regional Manager, Mr. Linus Fiakeye, the Deputy Regional Manager, Nana Asiedu Boaz and Hon. Solomon Donkor, who is now in charge of Administration of Volta COCOBOD. The Regional Manager stressed urged Extension Officers to transform all the Farmer Groups into vibrant Cooperative Societies to assist the PEPs implementations. Hon. Solomon Donkor stressed that, COCOBOD is working very hard to build a strong cocoa sector of high productivity and urged Extension Officers to work hard to make COCOBOD a success. All Extension Staff expressed appreciation for the training and pledged to work hard to uplift the envious image of COCOBOD in the Region and the country as whole.