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W/R: Subsidized cocoa fertilizers allegedly being smuggled

Subsidized fertilizers for cocoa farmers at Juaboso and its environs in the Western Region are being smuggled to neighbouring Cot d’Ivoire, National Democratic Congress regional Communications Director, Famous Tumi Acquah, has alleged.

According to him, the cocoa farmers did not know they were going to purchase a bag of the fertilizer at price of GHC80 hence did not save towards that.

He said some middlemen with the financial muscle, have taken advantage of the farmers’ inability to buy the fertilizers, and exploiting the system by buying the fertilizers at subsidized rate  which they resell to farmers in Cote d’Ivoire at commercial rate.

“We now have middlemen who are buying the fertilizers. When they go to buy, they are not asked whether they have cocoa farms or not. Those who have the money just move their cars to Juaboso, Bia East, Bia West, Akontombra, Enchi to buy the fertilizer and resell in Cote d’Ivoire,” he claimed on Takoradi-based Connect FM.

“There is a town called Africa which stretches to Adama in Cote d’Ivoire, that is where the smuggling of the cocoa fertilizers are being sold,” he alleged.

Assessing President Akufo-Addo’s three-day tour of the region, Mr Acquah said the farmers in the area expected the president to have assured them of how his government would work to ensure they get the fertilizers.

He thus wants the government to take action as quickly as possible.

Mr Acquah further claimed there was a shortage of cocoa seedlings from government to farmers and expressed surprise at President Akufo-Addo’s silence on the matter when he visited the area.

He said cocoa farmers were no longer receiving cocoa seedlings from the government, which he said was affecting the farmers.

By Loveridge Ampratwum Okyere|Connect FM|3news.com|Ghana

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