Afriyie Akoto elected chairman of Ghana-Côte d’Ivoire Cocoa Initiative

The two countries unanimously elected Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto to chair the steerig committee of the Initiative for the next 15 months

Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Ghana’s Minister of Food and Agriculture, has been elected the first chairman of the steering committee of the Ghana-Côte d’Ivoire Cocoa Initiative at its first meeting in Abidjan on Monday (21 June).

The two countries unanimously elected Dr Afriyie Akoto to chair the committee for the next 15 months.

His chairmanship will span the remainder of the current cocoa season, which ends in September 2021, and continue until the end of the next cocoa season in 2022.

The steering committee is the highest decision-making body for the Initiative.

It is responsible for formulating rules and regulations, ensuring the smooth implementation of the charter and functioning of the Secretariat, approving all budgets and work programmes of the Initiative, approving the rights and responsibilities of member countries, and resolving conflicts among the member countries.

Shared vision

In an earlier address, Dr Afriyie Akoto described the meeting as historic, because it seeks to ensure that the shared vision of the presidents of both countries – Their Excellencies Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Alassane Ouattara of Côte d’Ivoire – is realised.

However, he expressed concern about the “dragging of feet” by some participants. This is unfriendly to efforts to ensure that the Living Income Differential (LID) initiative is fully realised, he said.

He charged the participants in the meeting to ensure that all parties share the burden of compliance with the initiative’s dictates, as that is the only means to achieve the vision of President Akufo-Addo and his Ivorian counterpart.

The meeting was attended by all members of the steering committee.

Also present were the chairman of the food and agriculture/cocoa affairs committee of Ghana’s Parliament, John Osei Frimpong, and the committee’s ranking member, Eric Opoku, as well as a delegation of senior Ivorian government officials.

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