18.06.2004 Business & Finance

Cocoa farmers asked to repay loans

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Juaso (Ash), June 18, GNA - Dr Lord Justice Gyamfi-Fenteng, Asante-Akim South District Chief Executive, has asked farmers who benefited from the cocoa 'hi-tech' project last year to repay their loans without further delay.

This, he said will enable them to enjoy the facilities for the second time this year.

The DCE said the selection of farmers for the project has been streamlined and that any farmer who failed to pay should count himself out from the project.

Dr Gyamfi-Fenteng was speaking at a forum organised by the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) for farmers and purchasing clerks at Juaso on Tuesday.

He urged the farmers to meet regularly to deliberate on their problems and find solutions to them to improve on their living standards.

The DCE advised the farmers to be honest to the purchasing clerks who will serve as guarantors for them by selling their produce to them. He called for healthy competition among cocoa purchasing companies in the district as a way to check clerks who might attempt to cheat farmers.

Dr Gyamfi-Fenteng appealed to the farmers to identify themselves with the National Health Insurance Scheme to make it a success by paying their premium.

Mr Owusu-Ansah Yeboah, the District Director of MOFA said 2,500 farmers would benefit from the project this year from the 15,000 bags of 'hi-tech' fertilisers supplied to the district.

He said an 11-member vetting committee has been formed for the selection of farmers for the project.

Mr Alex Kwaku Korankye, Member of Parliament (MP) for Asante-Akim South, said the government would continue to assist farmers to improve their lot.

He warned members of the cocoa spraying gangs and officials of MOFA to refrain from dubious practices that would hamper the interest of cocoa farmers in their farming activities.

Mr Joseph Duncan Amoah, the District Quality Control Officer of COCOBOD, advised the farmers to adhere to the six days fermentation period of cocoa and always dry their cocoa beans well to enable the country maintain its image on the foreign market.

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