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General News Wed, 10 Sep 2008

Cocoa farmer's lives improve - NPP

Takoradi Sept. 10, GNA - Nana Owusu-Ankomah, the Western Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Wednesday said government has demonstrated practically that it is willing to make the lives of cocoa farmers better.

"The recent increase in the price of cocoa from 75 Ghana cedis to 120 Ghana cedis indicates that we have a listening government," he said. The NPP regional chairman was interacting with the media in Takoradi on the recent increase in the cocoa price.

He pointed out that when President J. A. Kufour was campaigning in 2000, he stressed that if cocoa farmers voted him into power, he will make sure that their lives were better.

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"Now the lives of cocoa farmers are much better than before," he said.

Nana Owusu-Ankomah said in the 1990's proceeds of cocoa were not paid early to farmers but now, they are being paid on time. He said payment of cocoa bonuses for the farmers were not encouraging during those period "however, the payment of cocoa bonuses have been encouraging as government has increased it nine times since it assumed office".

He noted that payments to cocoa farmers have become regular since then, and that thi s can be attributed to the economic management of government. He added that due to the mass cocoa spraying exercise and the introduction of high-tech fertilizers, cocoa farmers have been encouraged to produce more. Nana Owusu-Ankomah said it is possible that in 2009, fertilizer would be given free of charge to farmers. "On behalf of the cocoa farmers in the Western Region, we are congratulating government for making the lives of cocoa farmers much better," he said. He said the region in it holistic form is benefiting from the cocoa industry, adding that "we are asking all cocoa farming community to make sure that the NPP is voted into power so that the cocoa industry will grow".

Source: GNA
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