According to the Minority in Parliament, former President John Dramani Mahama set aside Ghc28.9 million as seed money for the Cocoa Farmers’ Pension Scheme, for which the government claims credit.
The current administration, according to Eric Opoku, the Ranking Member on the Committee of Food Agriculture, cannot claim the scheme.
The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has launched a pension scheme dubbed “Cocoa Farmers Pension Scheme” at a ceremony in Kumasi on Tuesday, 1st December 2020
It will also ensure a decent retirement income security for cocoa farmers for life and ensure that they can maintain decent livelihoods after retirement.
Mr. Eric Opoku Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) was mandated, under Section 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 cocoa farmers could also enjoy a well-deserved pension, upon retirement.
The implementation of this mandate was delayed until former President John Dramani Mahama implemented measures between 2013 and 2016, he said.
”The Mahama administration left Ghc28.9 million as seed money for a cocoa farmer pension scheme before leaving office, but the current administration has misappropriated the money and continues to claim to have introduced the scheme.”
”It was our plan that the Pension Scheme for cocoa farmers in the country would enable them to make voluntary contributions towards their retirement while COCOBOD made a supplementary contribution on their behalf. That was why Mahama set aside the seed money. It was to ensure decent retirement income security for cocoa farmers for life and ensure that they can maintain decent livelihoods after retirement. But when this government took over, they did not do what was planned and admitted in the Auditor General’s report that the money was used for something different and that they would rectify the issue.”
He disclosed this during a meeting with cocoa farmers and chiefs in Dadeasoaba, Ahafo Region, Wednesday, September 13, 2023.