The Member of Parliament for Mpohor in the Western Region, Alex Kofi Agyekum, is demanding action from the Ghana Cocoa Board on cocoa road projects that have stalled.
He contends that the neglect of the projects in most cocoa growing areas without any explanation to the communities and leaders leaves much to be desired.
In an interview with Citi News, Alex Agyekum, whose constituency lies in the cocoa-growing belt of the region said COCOBOD and its contractors have no excuse for the continuous neglect of the projects.
With some four months left to the end of 2020, he insisted that there must be progress on the roads.
“I know the CEO [of COCOBOD] is doing very well and if those roads have been approved and a budget has been assigned for it, what are we waiting for?”
“So is it papers that they are supposed to sign or contract letters that are supposed to be signed that they are not signing and that we are not seeing any action on the roads and nobody is telling anybody anything? I think that we must work past that,” Mr. Agyekum said.
The MP further urged contractors on such roads to be open about their struggles and the status of the roads they are working on.
“When Members of Parliament call you, pick your phones and tell us the challenges so that together we solve them,” he implored.
Part of the reason for the stalling of the road projects was because the Akufo-Addo administration suspended them in 2017 for an audit following corruption concerns.
The Mahama administration was accused of awarding over 230 different road contracts to the tune of GHS3.5 billion under the project, to the detriment of COCOBOD’s finances.
The report on the audit of cocoa roads commissioned by the Akufo-Addo administration will be published at the “appropriate time,” Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo Maafo has said.
The suspension was lifted in July 2019 and Consolidated Bank Ghana released GHc530 million to COCOBOD for the construction of cocoa roads.
There has yet to be any accounting for the audit.
The Senior Minister said the report on the audit of cocoa roads will be published at the “appropriate time.”