Half Assini youth angry over ‘aborted’ fertilizer production plant

Tension is brewing at Half Assini in the Jomoro district of the Western Region as community leaders and youth express disgust over government’s failure to build a fertilizer plant in the area.

Government in November last year signed a memorandum of understanding with Oman Oil Company, Qurum, Muscat Sultanate of Oman, for the development, financing and construction of Methanol, Fertilizer and Downstream derivatives producing plant in Ghana.

According to the community members, the plant would have employed about 3500 youth upon establishment. But they say the plan has been aborted without any justified explanation, something they labelled as “unfair treatment by government and other stakeholders”.

The memorandum, a copy of which is in the possession of this reporter reads: “The parties hereby express their intention to exchange information and explore joint opportunities in Ghana, including but not limited to the following: Methanol production and downstream derivatives, fertilizer production, nitric acid and ammonium nitrate production, including ammonium nitrate derivatives for both fertilizer and industrial explosives.” Former Minister for Agriculture, Clement Kofi Humado and Energy Minister Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah signed the memorandum on behalf of government, while Nasser K. Al Jashmi signed on behalf of the Oman Oil Company S. A. O. C. Chiefs and opinion leaders at the signing ceremony last year pledged their support for the project, and land was donated for the citing of the factory. 

Almost a year after the memorandum was signed, nothing has happened to indicate the production of fertilizers locally for the benefit of farmers.

Late former Chairman of the National Development Planning Committee Mr. P. V. Obeng, initiated the idea of building a fertilizer processing plant in this district since it is largely a farming community. He requested the services of 2012 Convention People’s Party flagbearer Dr. Michael Abu Sakara Foster, who is an agronomist (Agricultural Scientist), and an independent Presidential candidate in 2012 Mr. Jacob Osei Yeboah who is an Engineer and Entrepreneur to bring their rich experiences on board to help bring the project into fruition.

When this reporter contacted the two presidential aspirants, they confirmed their involvement in the said project, but could not explain why it has come to a standstill.

Meanwhile, the angry youth claim this is not the first time they have been denied a good project such as this, citing the “Domunli Gas Project” as a perfect example.

The angry youth are demanding answers from the Minister of Energy and other stake holders, over why the project has not materialized.

When this reporter contacted the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Jomoro Constituency, Wing Cdr Francis Kabenlah Anaman (Rtd) to seek some clarifications on the concerns of the angry youth in his constituency, he said he is planning to hold a meeting with the Energy Minister to discuss the stalled project.

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