The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has challenged claims by the Minority in Parliament that it is swindling and cheating cocoa farmers.
The Minority in Parliament at a press conference in Accra on Thursday, 25 July 2019 claimed cocoa farmers are worse off under the Akufo-Addo government compared to their situation under the previous John Mahama government.
The Minority also accused Nana Akufo-Addo of blowing $10 million on audit services on cocoa road projects. They also questioned the prudence in suspending the projects when no one has been found guilty of wrongdoing in the award and execution of the works.
However, manager at the office of Chief Executive Officer of COCOBOD, Mr. Fiifi Boafo speaking to Valentina Ofori-Afriyie on 505 on Class91.3FM on Thursday, 25 July 2019 dismissed the claims and added that some cocoa road contracts were awarded to NDC regional executives by the then NDC-government.
He said: “Nobody will want to undertake a project where we do not know the cost of the project. When these road contracts are being awarded, they make provision for 10 percent variation but in certain circumstances you have variations to about 70 percent, 80 percent, clearly showing that there was no proper assessment before these contracts were awarded.
“We cannot go on as an institution of the state whereby contracts are awarded, we do not know how much they will cost eventually, and it’s just a matter of go ahead, do the job and then it's business as usual. So, if someone sits back and say: ‘it was all go ahead and do it’, we share a different opinion but yes, indeed COCOBOD did not make provision for new construction of roads but COCOBOD indeed took care of existing contractual agreements that we had to pay for.
“In fact, I’m looking at the documents of contracts that have been completed from 2017 up to date and some of them, the contractors are actually regional executives of the National Democratic Congress.”