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Cocoa Farmers Welcome Pension Scheme

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Cocoa farmers across the country have hailed the decision by government to establish a pension scheme that will help in providing a long term fund to meet their retirement needs.

They expressed delight about the initiative by government, and stated they await its implementation.

Speaking at the stakeholders forum on Cocoa Farmers Pension Scheme organized by the National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA) on Wednesday in Accra, the National Chief Cocoa Farmer, Alhaji Alhassan Bukari said the initiative by government will make farming lucrative and encourage the youth to go into farming.

The objective of the scheme is to provide a social safety-net intended to make the lives of coca farmers bearable at old age.

The Chief Executive Officer of NPRA, Mr. Atta Krofi, addressing the media, said a provision has been made in the 3rd tier voluntary personal pension scheme to cater for the perculiar needs of workers in the informal sector of the economy, including cocoa farmers.

According to him, the scheme will be a contribution scheme with contributions from government or CocoBod as plan sponsors, and beneficiary farmers.

He further stated that the benefits that will accrue, will depend on how much contributions made by each farmer.

“The more the amount contributed, the bigger the benefits”, he stressed.

He noted that the initiative will encourage the culture of savings amongst farmers.

The Deputy Minister for Employment, Bright Wireku Brobbey, on his part stated that his sector is committed in ensuring the wellbeing of all workers including cocoa farmers reach the top of the development agenda, especially concerning the targeted production of 1.5 million metric tonnes of cocoa within the next four years.

He stressed “It is therefore incumbent on us to ensure cocoa farmers are well-resourced, have better working conditions, access to support services, and availability of social protection systems”.

Source: Emmanuel Yeboah Britwum/ thePublisher

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