Regional News Mon, 30 Jan 2006

Atwima-Mponua DCE warns mass cocoa spraying gangs

Nkyemkyemso (Ash), Jan 30, GNA - Mr Wilberforce Owusu-Ansah, the Atwima-Mponua District Chief Executive, has issued a stern warning to all the gangs involved in the mass cocoa spraying exercise in the district not to politicise the exercise.

He said he would deal with a gang leader who would discriminate against any farmer in the spraying of the farms on the basis of his or her political affiliation.

''The exercise is for every farmer irrespective of his or her political affiliation and gangs which have been discriminating against farmers on political lines should stop the practice forthwith.'' Mr Owusu-Ansah said this at Nkyemkyemso during an open forum at which some farmers complained that they were being discriminated against in the exercise.

The complainants, numbering more than 10, said while some of their colleague farmers have had their farms sprayed more than once, their farms had not been sprayed at all.

The forum formed part of the DCE's familiarization tour of the district to interact with the people.

Mr Owusu-Ansah said the government pays about 600 million cedis every month as wages to cocoa sprayers in the district and would therefore not allow them to thwart the good intentions of the government.

Mr Bright Owusu-Asare, the assemblyman for the area, said the people had raised 5.6 million cedis for the provision of two boreholes. He said their only source of drinking water was the Nkyemkyem stream that dries up during the dry season, forcing them to walk long distances to look for water.

The assemblyman appealed to the district assembly and the Ghana Education Service to open a primary school in the town for the ever-growing population of children of school going-age who now have to walk about six kilometres to attend school.

Source: GNA