Progressive Licensed Cocoa Buyers Association (PLCBA) was on Friday 10thJuly launched in Accra with the view of advancing the welfare and interest of all its members and together pull resources to raise adequate funding for operations and come out a better service to farmers.
The Progressive Licenced Cocoa Buyers Association was established as a company limited by guarantee under the Ghana Company’s code 1963 (Act) 179 on 20thMay 2014 by fourteen indigenous licensed cocoa buying companies.
Mr. Samuel Anane, President of the association, speaking at the launch, said that the coming together will make members look for efficient and effective ways of doing business. He added that it will also enable them to pull resources together to attract large sums of money for purchases of high volumes of cocoa and most importantly reducing the numerous challenges they are currently facing.
The President also officially introduced the COCOA SIKA PAYMENT PLATFORM. This is an electronic system of payment that will eliminate physical movement of huge sums of money to farm gates for payment and ensure a cashless system that will eradicate losses associated with the physical cash payment.
He said in collaboration with the banks and the telecos, they will set up redeeming points where farmers can redeem their money as and when they need them. This he said will ensure prompt payment to farmers in all agro industry, gradually push them unto the formal financial platform that will allow them access to loans for expanding and improving upon their farms and reduce reported cases of robbery of farmers.
This he said will also reduce the huge sums of money licensed buying companies lose to through theft and other corrupt activities and make the association attractive for investors and financial institutions to invest more money for purchases.
The Chairman Nana Kobina Nketsia V, Omanhene of Esikado, said the cocoa industry is in important industry due to its contributions to the economy of Ghana and therefore the need for stakeholders to unite and dialogue with the regulator Cocobod on innovations and policies that will move the industry forward. He welcomed the association and the introduction of the Cocoa Sika platform which he believes will ensure sanity in their operations and prompt payment to farmers.
He used the occasion to express gratitude to the support of government to cocoa farmers in the areas of fertilizer distribution, mass spraying, free seedlings among others but pleaded with the authorities to do that in a non-partisan manner. He also requested government to do periodic adjustment to price of cocoa as our currency fluctuates so that the farmer will not lose more and also discourage the temptation of smuggling of cocoa outside the country.
He again pleaded with government to attend to cocoa roads because cocoa farmers are losing output due to unmotorable roads and the nation is suffering from loss of output, a pleathat was reechoed by the western regional chief farmer who also praised government interventions but called for increased number of extension personals, and personalscurrently measuring farms for the distribution of fertilizers to speedup the process.He also asked Cocobod to increase the beneficiaries of the scholarship scheme.
Mr. Tei Quartey the Director of Research on behalf of Cocobod CEO commended the companies for coming together to form an association to improve and grow the industry.
He welcomed the Cocoa Sika platform innovation and asked the leadership to collaborate with Cocobod to come out with the best framework and policies to ensure smooth implementation of the electronic platform. This he believes will ensure prompt payment to a farmer which is a major worry to Cocobod.
Justices Juliana Amonoo from the Judicial Service assured the association of the judiciary’sreadiness to ensure justice as far the cocoa industry is concerned and in collaboration with stakeholders establish special courts for prosecution of cocoa related cases.
She said the judicial service is ready to assist the industry to establish the requiredlegal framework for their operations. She also took the opportunity to remind the farmers and the buying companies of the fact that child labour and smuggling is a crime against the country and that anyone found guilty will be punished by the law.
|Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are those of the writers and do not reflect those of Peacefmonline.com. Peacefmonline.com accepts no responsibility legal or otherwise for their accuracy of content. Please report any inappropriate content to us, and we will evaluate it as a matter of priority.|