Issue COCOBOD CEO must be sacked – Casely-Hayford

Under his leadership, the cocoa sector which is the leading foreign exchange earner for the country has suffered major setbacks.

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Dr. Stephen Kwabena Opuni, COCOBOD CEO play

Dr. Stephen Kwabena Opuni, COCOBOD CEO

Casely-Hayford - Financial Analyst play Casely-Hayford
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Financial analyst, Sydney Casely-Hayford is calling for the immediate replacement of the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD).

“Consistently, cocoa has been under-performing and there is no reason why we should keep him there,” he said on Citi FM’s, The Big Issue. President John Mahama in November 2013 appointed Dr. Stephen Kwabena Opuni to head COCOBOD.

Under his leadership, the cocoa sector which is the leading foreign exchange earner for the country has suffered major setbacks.

Inadequate rainfall, lack of pesticides and fertilizers for farmers, the depreciation of the cedi, increased smuggling of cocoa beans, delayed resource allocation, the reduction of government spraying programme, among others have adversely affected the sector.

At the beginning of the 2014/2015 cocoa season, COCOBOD projected a target yield of 1 million tons; a projection many industry players described as over ambitious.

The International Cocoa Organization (ICCO) subsequently dropped Ghana’s yield for the 2014/2015 crop season by about 20% from some 900,000 tonnes to about 700,000 tonnes.

It attributed the downward revision to fatigue of the cocoa trees, weather patterns and smuggling.

According to Casely-Hayford, when the wrong people are put in key positions such as COOCOBOD, their ineffectiveness has rippling damaging effects.

“When you don’t put the right people in positions, people who are business focused enough and don’t understand the impact of what is happening, that is where you have your problems because for you to predict that you will do a certain quantity of tonnage and have a shortfall by so much, you upset the whole international cycle of business,” he complained.

He mentioned that some traders in cocoa; are going to lose about $41 million this year all because of what Ghana’s over ambitious prediction.

Casely-Hayford stated that he “will call for the head of COCOBOD immediately” the the board must also be revamped since “Dr. Opuni has supervised this particular prediction in the last two years since he was transferred.”

“It is always the institutional head…there are things you must do and if you don’t do them and get them right, the repercussions down the line will hit you,” he added.

Opuni is a political ‘hatcher’

In a related development, the president of IMANI Ghana, Franklin Cudjoe pointed out that Dr. Opuni’s position is based on political reasons and not based on merit.

He said: “I think the current CEO is a good man, but he is a political ‘hatcher’,”

Cudjoe argued that “if it was a very civilized economy, nobody would even ask him to leave…we are not focusing on the guy, not at all. We are just saying that he is not the man for the job because he has no commercial experience.”

Source: citifmonline.com             

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