COCOBOD sets records straight on Akandoh claims on $1.3bn syndicated loan

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Joseph Boahen

The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has denied claims by Juabosso Member of Parliament, Kwabena Mintah Akandoh, that the government cannot account for the $1.3billion syndicated loan.

The opposition lawmaker had accused the government and the COCOBOD of not being able to explain how the $1.3billion cocoa syndicated loan was utilised.

He said no tangible explanation has been given when asked about the whereabouts of the funds.

In 2019, a consortium of local and international banks signed an agreement to lend $1.3 billion to the COCOBOD to be used to purchase cocoa beans from farmers for the 2020/21 crop season.

The loan was expected to be used to purchase about 900,000 tonnes of cocoa beans in the next cocoa season.

But speaking on Asempa FM’s Ekosii Sen show Monday, Public Relations Officer of COCOBOD, Fiifi Boafo, said COCOBOD has met all requirements with its financial partners for the syndicated loan.

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“Cocobod has met all its statutory requirements and agreements with its financial partners in accounting for the syndicated loan for the crop season which closed in September 2021.

“Furthermore, COCOBOD disclosed that it has drawn down US$1.45 billion out of the US$1.5 billion facility procured for the present 2021/2022 season, into financing the purchase of cocoa and other industry costs,” he said.

He, therefore, urged the public to disregard the false claims by the Juaboso MP as COCOBOD is on course to meet all its financial obligations to farmers and the LBCs within the current crop season.

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