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Scholarships for Cocoa Farmers’ children on course

By Robert Tachie Menson, GNA     

Danyame (B/A), July 19, GNA – Cocoa farmers
have been assured to exercise restraint as they might no longer struggle to
secure scholarships for their children in Senior High Schools (SHSs).

This is because when the government’s free SHS
educational policy becomes a reality, it might cover all forms of scholarships
including that of the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) at that level.

Dr Nii Tackie-Otoo, the Brong-Ahafo Regional
Manager of Cocoa Health and Extension Division (CHED) of the COCOBOD stated in
response to a question about alleged unfairness in the award of the COCOBOD’s
scholarships to farmers, during farmers’ sensitisation rally organised by his
outfit at Danyame in the Dormaa Central Municipality. 

Dr Tackie-Otoo added that the coming into
being of the free SHS educational policy implied that      students would be admitted on merit into
schools.

He therefore advised the farmers to support
and encourage their children who were Basic Education Certificate Examination
prospective candidates to study seriously to obtain excellent results to get
admission into schools of their choice in the coming years.

Dr Tackie-Otoo entreated farmers who had been
leaving their cheque books with purchasing clerks (PCs) to stop the practice
and keep them in their own custody.

He noted that keeping them in the custody of
the PCs had been one of the causes for some of the farmers, especially those in
the remote farming communities not getting the COCOBOD scholarships for their
children.

Dr Tackie-Otoo explained that some of the
seemingly unscrupulous PCs used the books to fraudulently secure scholarship
deals for otherwise unqualified people to the detriment of the real
beneficiaries.    

He asked farmers to exercise restraint as
government was still working with a special committee including representatives
of farmers concerning the determination of the producer price of cocoa.

Mr Iddrissa Quattara, the Dormaa Central
Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) said government was committed to sustaining
interventions like the mass cocoa spraying exercise and provision of
fertilisers to cocoa farmers introduced by previous governments to boost cocoa
production.

Mr Quattara appealed to farmers and other
agents who had been smuggling agro-chemicals and other farm inputs supplied
free by government to markets in neighbouring Cote d’Ivoire to stop it, warning
that when arrested offenders would be dealt with according to the full rigours
of the law.

GNA

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