Hundreds of cocoa farmers from Techiman, Nkoranza, Wenchi and Kintampo districts of the Brong-Ahafo Region took to the streets at Techiman to demonstrate against the Ghana Cocoa Board (Cocobod)
for attempting to relocate the Techiman office of the board which was established in 1983, to the western side of the region.
Speaking to the media, the spokesman of the Cocoa Farmers’ Association, Arhin Kwasi, said last year a delegation from Cocobod
embarked on a fact-finding tour at Techiman to ascertain the possibility of reopening the abandoned Techiman office, so that it could take care of the surrounding districts; and they were satisfied that it was possible to reopen the office. He said the Techiman Traditional Council even offered three more buildings to be used as offices which have since been renovated by the association to the admiration of the chiefs.
According to Mr Arhin Kwasi, Cocobod promised to reactivate the offices in October this year, only for it to take a U-turn and relocated the offices to the western corridor of the Brong-Ahafo Region, which already has such an office.
He said because Cocobod promised to reactivate the Techiman offices, the Traditional Council additionally offered a 400-acre land at Kuntunso, a village near Techiman, for seed garden since farmers from the area and the surrounding districts had to travel all the way to Akomadan in the Ashanti Region for cocoa seedlings.
In his view, since the 1983 bushfires which burnt almost all cocoa farms in Techiman and the surrounding districts, cocoa farmers had worked tirelessly to replant their farms and as at the time he was speaking to the media, Mr. Arhin said cocoa farming had once again become lucrative and more farmers were entering the business.
The association has therefore appealed to the Cocobod and the Minister of Food and Agriculture to maintain the Cocobod offices at Techiman to serve the other surrounding districts.
Meanwhile, members of the association have presented a petition to the MCE of Techiman, Philip Amponsah, stating their grievances.
FROM Eric Bawah, Techiman
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