The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Cocoa Board (Cocobod), Dr Stephen Opuni, has been relieved of his position by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
The termination of his appointment, which was contained in a letter signed by Nana Asante Bediatuo, Secretary to the President yesterday, said the decision was taken pursuant to Section 14 (1) of the Presidential (Transition) Act, 2012 (Act 845) and paragraph six of the schedule.
The letter stated, “You ceased to hold office as Chief Executive of Ghana Cocoa Board upon the assumption of office of His Excellency, the President of the Republic.
“You are directed to hand over your office to His Excellency the President’s Representative at the Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie-Akoto, and proceed to collect any terminal benefits or facilities due you under the relevant law.”
The letter also directed, “In view of the urgency attached to this matter, please ensure that you hand over and cease to act as Chief Executive of Ghana Cocoa Board not later than 5 pm on January 13, 2017.”
DAILY GUIDE learnt that Dr. Opuni attended a meeting of the Transition Team yesterday and was asked to give a briefing of his stewardship to the team.
Some of the areas he was supposed to touch included projects he initiated for Cocobod, contracts signed and outstanding issues that need urgent attention.
Dr. Opuni was appointed by former President John Mahama on November 30, 2013.
Prior to his appointment, he was the CEO of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA).
His tenure at Cocobod had been dogged with allegations of victimization, cronyism, corruption, among others.
He had a long fight with unionized workers under the auspices of the Industrial Commercial Workers Union (ICU), who accused Dr. Opuni of putting systematic plans in place to break the front of workers of the cocoa sector.
In the heat of the struggle, the aggrieved workers at a point claimed Ghana lost more than $10 million because of the alleged dealings of Dr Opuni.
By William Yaw Owusu