EcoCare Ghana on Thursday, July 1, 2021, held the maiden edition of its cocoa legal clinics programme to build the capacity of cocoa farmers, farmer-based organisations, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and the media.
The programme was held at the Erata Hotel in Accra in partnership with ClientEarth with support from TaylorCrabbe Initiative as well as the Ghana Civil Society Cocoa Platform (GCCP) with funding from the United Kingdom’s Foreign & Commonwealth Development Office (FCDO) through their Forest Governance, Markets and Climate (FGMC) programme.
The cocoa legal clinics are designed to develop the capacity of civil society on the legal and regulatory framework governing the production and trade in sustainable cocoa.
The programme has been put together to get cocoa farmers and their groups well-informed about the legalities of the sector to help them better understand and know how to get the full benefits of the industry generating billions of dollars every year.
Speaking to Modernghana News on the sidelines of the programme on Thursday, Managing campaigner for EcoCare Ghana, Obed Owusu-Addai explained in simple terms that what his outfit is seeking to do is to expose stakeholders to the laws governing Cocoa production and trade in Ghana.
“More importantly we want this training to feed into the ongoing Ghana-EU dialogue on sustainable Cocoa production which seeks to ensure that Cocoa is produced in a sustainable manner in Ghana,” he added.
In a country where almost 90% of cocoa farmers live in poverty, EcoCare Ghana is hoping that through the legal clinics, farmers and farmer-based organisations would receive needed education to help make their lives better by ensuring they receive what they deserve from the rich industry, particularly from the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD).
“The ultimate aim is to get the Cocoa sector to be more lucrative, to get the youth and also those who are currently in it to benefit from being Cocoa farmers.
“Being a Cocoa farmer is not a curse, it should rather be a blessing,” Obed Owusu-Addai stressed.
At the maiden edition of the cocoa legal clinics, a representative of TaylorCrabbe Initiative led the legal training and capacity development of participants with a consultant from GCCP delivering a presentation of a draft Strategic Document.
According to the Managing campaigner for EcoCare Ghana, two more editions of the cocoa legal clinics will be held before 2021 comes to a close.
Written by: Eric Nana Yaw Kwafo