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11.11.2004 Regional News

Cocoa farmers awarded by PBC

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Suhum, Nov. 11, GNA - Twenty-four cocoa farmers in the Suhum Kraboa /Coalter District of the Eastern Region were honoured by the Produce Buying Company (PBC) at a farmers forum at Suhum for outstanding productivity.

Three of the farmers, Opanin Kofi Anyeng, Opanin Michael Adoto and Opanin Samuel Ameve, who were adjudged the best farmers in the district, were presented with roofing sheets, a pair of Wellington boots, two cutlasses, a lantern and certificate.

The rest were presented with a pair of Willington boots two cutlasses, a lantern and certificate.

The Deputy Eastern Regional Manager of the PBC, Mr J. Kpikpitse said the award was in recognition of the hard work of the farmers and asked them to keep it up.

He assured them that the company would ensure that they were provided with the necessary assistance to the farmers. Mar Kpikpitse said the government had released sufficient money for the payment of cocoa purchased and bonuses for the farmers, adding, the Management of the Company would ensure that every eligible farmer received the bonus.

He said the Produce Buying Company in the Eastern Region had achieved its target and therefore, expressed the company's appreciation to the farmers.

The District Manager of the Company, Nana Appiah appealed to the farmers who left the PBC to return to the fold, adding, "very soon the company would economically empowered them."

He said the district had embarked on an exercise to eliminate malpractices relating to weighing scales and associated problems and advised the farmers to accept the Akuafo Cheque since it was a guarantee to the farmers to obtain loans from the banks to maintain their farms. He appealed to the local chief farmers to form the seven-member committee in their various societies so that they could liaise with their marketing clerks.

The District Officer of the Cocoa Service Division (CSD), Miss Melody Atta, called on the farmers to take advantage of the mass cocoa spraying exercise and maintain their farms.

She said since cocoa was their livelihood, they should always contact the officials of the CSD for advise and expressed concerned about how some of the farmers, after spending a huge sum of money to train them to improve upon their farms, failed to put what they learn into practice.

An Official of the South Akim Rural Bank, Mr E. S. Asamoah said the bank had removed all the impediments that cause delays in the payment of the Akuafo Cheques. Nov. 11, 04

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