The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) says about twenty-four (24) Cocoa Licensed Buying Companies are indebted to it to the tune of over GH¢30 million due to non-payment of seed funds.
This comes after the companies paid GH¢66 million of the substantive debt of GH¢96 million as a fallout from the 2020 Auditor General’s report.
Appearing before the Public Accounts Committee, the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of COCOBOD, Ray Ankrah said efforts are in place to retrieve the outstanding debt.
“The amount in question was GH¢96,963,169.47. As of now, we have recovered GH¢66,662,401.47 which constitutes 65.70% of the amount in question. We are not resting to collect the money, efforts are ongoing to retrieve the outstanding amount. We are talking to the banks and companies. Our legal department is working assiduously to take them to court to recover the debt. They are already in court and the judicial process is playing out now,” Mr. Ankrah explained.
He assured that monies given to officers for projects which have not been paid will be recovered.
“Mr. Chairman, your sentiment is what we share on this side. We followed the law scrupulously to make sure we take the money. But we had some practical difficulties because it’s always the case that these monies were taken for projects. Renovation here, repair work there, fixing things there and these are our experiences. At the time the auditors came, the work was still ongoing.”
“It’s difficult for you to retire the officer in charge to come and say these are the supporting documentation. It’s a timing issue. But as soon as the work is done, we ensure that within one week in compliance with the law, we retire. And if they don’t, it’s part of COCOBOD’s internal policies to surcharge the said officers,” he stated.