Head of Public Affairs at the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Fiifi Boafo, has stated that poor remuneration of Cocoa farmers contributes largely to the use of children as labour on their farms.
Speaking on Monday, during the National Agenda show on Ashh FM, he intimated that “if the farmer earns enough he will be able to employ the services of anyone to help on the farm and wouldn’t have to rely on a relative or children.”
“It’s one of the things we have been engaging the international buyers and the people at the forefront of the fight against child labour in cocoa communities in West Africa, about,” he added.
Mr. Boafo was contributing to discussions on JoyNews Hotline Documentary dubbed, ‘Children in cocoa labour’, which was aired on Monday.
The documentary exposes how children are hired to work as labourers on various cocoa farms of their new taskmasters.
Mr. Boafo condemned the act, insisting that COCOBOD is against any form of child abuse, especially child labour in the industry. Hence, the Board has undertaken a number of programmes and interventions aimed at addressing the menace.
He stated that COCOBOD has introduced sanctions such as withdrawal of business relationships with offending companies as part of measures aimed at bringing the situation under control.
He added that COCOBOD is engaging farmers through various sensitisation programmes aimed at completely eliminating the canker in the sector. This includes sensitisation programmes on radio.
The Head of Public Affairs at COCOBOD noted that government interventions such as the school feeding programme and the free Senior High School policy have significantly brought the situation under control.