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12.10.2003 General News

Cocoa farmers and marketing clerks honoured

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Breman Asikuma C/R, Oct 12, GNA - A total of 35 cocoa farmers and seven marketing clerks in the Central Region have been honoured for their hard work and meritorious services at Breman Asikuma.

The Best Farmer award went to Nana Toku, from Assin Bereku, who was presented with a 20-inch colour television, a mist blower, insecticides, a half piece of wax cloth and a certificate.

Mr Noah Brobbey of Assin Fosu, who was adjudged the best marketing clerk, took home a Gas Cooker and accessories, insecticides and a certificate.

The rest of the farmers were given bicycles, Wellington boots, crocodile machetes, mist blowers, gas cookers and insecticides while the other marketing clerks received insecticides and Wellington boots. Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Sampson Kwame Anfako, District Chief Executive (DCE) for Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa, said the government was leaving no stone unturned to resuscitate the industry.

He said, the government supplied inputs like insecticides, Wellington boots, overcoats and mist blowers for the mass spraying of cocoa farms.

Mr Anfako disclosed that cocoa purchases in the district had gone up by 33 percent since 2000 and expressed the hope that production would increase further in the future.

He noted that the supply of high-tech fertiliser to farmers had contributed to Ghana gaining the second position in cocoa production in the World.

He commended the PBC for recognising the hard of the farmers and honouring them.

Nana Tutu, who is the Central Region Chief Farmer, said the reintroduction of the Akuafo Cheque would help in eliminating fraud in cocoa purchases, adding that, it would also help in thwarting the activities of armed robbers, who attack farmers when they receive money for the sale of their produce.

He noted that farmers went through problems in cashing their Akuafo cheques when it was first introduced some time ago and expressed the hope that the system would be streamlined to eliminate bottlenecks. Nana Tutu cautioned the marketing clerks against adjusting weighing scales to swindle farmers and said inspectors would be sent round to check the illegal practice.

Mr R. Tetteh, Regional Manager of PBC, assured cocoa farmers that the Company would do everything possible to promote their welfare.

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