Government has announced plans to roll out the cocoa farmers pension fund.

The scheme, which was launched by President Akufo-Addo on December 2, 2020, is to provide pension for about 1.5 million cocoa farmers.

This, according to the President, will enable cocoa farmers to make voluntary contributions towards their retirement, whilst COCOBOD makes a supplementary contribution on behalf of the farmers as well.

Addressing the 38th National Farmers’ Day celebration on Friday, the President could not hide his excitement at the prospect of the roll out.

“I am happy to announce again that the CMS is ready, setting in motion the processes for rolling out the much-anticipated cocoa farmers pension scheme,” he said.

The President explained that the mandatory scheme will come into full force in the current 2022/2023 crop season.

He said the scheme will provide decent pensions for cocoa farmers after a minimum of five years contribution.

The President stated that government has begun the implementation of the Cocoa Management System (CMS) to help establish a credible database on Ghana’s cocoa farmers.

“The integrated cocoa farm database which includes a census of all cocoa farmers in Ghana as well as mapping of all farms will ensure for the first time the availability of correct, accurate information on land size, geographic locations, populations, and records of cocoa farmers and farms in Ghana,” he said.

In the interim, the President urged Ghanaians to support the government to bring to a halt the menace of illegal mining as it affects cocoa farms

“Fellow Ghanaians, the sustainability of the cocoa sector is contingent on how effectively we are able to fight the devastating effect of  the illegal mining menace ‘galamsey.”’

“All of us, farmers and citizens have a collective responsibility to bring this environmental canker to a halt if we do not want to ruin the inheritance our forefathers bequeathed us,” he added.