The Koforidua High Court, presided over by Her Ladyship Justice Jennifer Anne Myers Ahmed (Mrs), has granted an interlocutory injunction on a total of 860 acres of cocoa farmlands intended for use by the Ghana Armed Forces for the establishment of a military base.

The land had been leased to the military by the Chiefs of Akyem Asafo and Kyebi.

Approximately 40 aggrieved cocoa farmers petitioned various institutions, including Parliament and COCOBOD, seeking intervention to protect their livelihoods.

After negotiations with Barima Boampong Darkwanin, chief of Akyem Asafo, the queen mother, and his elders failed to reverse the lease, COCOBOD and its lawyers assisted the affected farmers in filing a motion for an interlocutory injunction at the Koforidua High Court.

On Wednesday, May 8, 2024, the court granted the injunction, halting any activity on the disputed land until the substantive case is resolved.

The court also directed the plaintiffs to provide site plans and relevant documents covering the land, as respondents argue that not all 860 acres consist of cocoa farms.

Portions of the land are being used for illegal mining causing destruction to cocoa trees in the area.

Head of COCOBOD’s Anti-Illegal Mining Unit, Prof. Michael Kwateng, stressed that the destruction of cocoa farms without COCOBOD’s consent clearly violates the Economic Plant Protection Act (Act 47).

 He noted that Ghana’s cocoa production capacity has been negatively impacted in recent years due to the illegal sale of cocoa farms for mining and other activities.

This he said is having a negative effect on the economy because the cocoa sector is the backbone of Ghana’s economy.

The affected cocoa farmers commended COCOBOD for showing relentless support in seeking justice for them.

Source: Ghana/ Ansah