The president of the Ghana National Cocoa Producers Association, Stevenson Anane Boateng, has announced that the association’s members will boycott the upcoming Farmers Day Celebrations scheduled for Friday, December 3. 2021.
The planned boycott follows the association’s protest over the implementation of the cocoa farmers’ pension plan.
According to the president, “we are going to demonstrate, and from the beginning of December, the food that we produce on our farms will never move from the doors of our farm to the market… and also on Farmer’s Day, we will not attend the program. ”
He made these comments while addressing a press conference in Kumasi about the pension plan.
Stevenson Anane Boateng noted that beyond the Farmer’s Day boycott, the association will not sell its cocoa products to the government as part of its protest on December 1, 2021.
Farmers, who are not satisfied with the implementation of the pension plan for cocoa farmers, questioned the composition of the board used by the Ghana Cocoa Board to carry out the program.
The plan is expected to protect some 1.5 million cocoa farmers nationwide with some moderate retirement packages; however, its implementation has generated concern among the beneficiaries.
The plan, which was piloted in October 2020 at New Edubiase in the Ashanti region, was launched by President Akufo-Addo in December 2020.
According to President Akufo-Addo, “the Pension Scheme will enable cocoa farmers to make voluntary contributions towards their retirement, whilst COCOBOD makes a supplementary contribution on behalf of the farmers as well.”
In recognition of their hard work, the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) was mandated, under Section twenty-six (26) of the COCOBOD Law, 1984 (PNDC L.81), to establish a Contributory Insurance Scheme for Cocoa Farmers within the framework of the Social Security Scheme, so that they could also enjoy a well-deserved pension, upon retirement.