The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has launched a project to provide solar energy lamps in cocoa, coffee and sheanut growing communities across the country.

Under it, 11,000 solar street lamps had so far been installed in more than 2,000 rural communities alongside the distribution of 1.2 million pieces of solar torch lights to the farmers.

The goal is to improve socio-economic activities, curb rural-urban migration, enhance security and reduce incidence of crime.

As part of efforts to help safeguard the solar panels to prolong their lifespan, a three-day meeting was held for selected stakeholders in beneficiary communities, quality control and other technical officers of the COCOBOD in Kumasi on Monday.

Mr Samuel Yaw Adusei, Deputy Ashanti Regional Minister, lauded the initiative and said there was no doubt that it was helping to improve the living conditions of the rural population.

He underlined the government?s determination to ensure that roads linking cocoa growing areas were put into good shape.

Mr Anthony Fofie, Chief Executive of the COCOBOD, said the lack of basic infrastructure in the farming communities would need to be tackled to entice the youth.

He said they would, therefore, continue to focus on helping to make things better and promote the wellbeing of the cocoa farmers.

Mr Francis Akuamoah Boateng, Chief Executive Officer of Strategic Security Systems International Limited (3SiL), implementers of the project, said the farmer should be given every needed support and encouragement to increase crop yield and returns.

The provision of the solar lamps, he noted, would reduce some of the challenges and threats they were often confronted with including snake and scorpion bites in the night.

Mr Boateng said his Company?s technicians were working to design systems that would allow for other uses of the solar panels such as charging of mobile phones by the farmers.

Alhaji Alhassan Bukari, the National Chief Farmer, praised the COCOBOD for working to transform the situation of the farmer.

The Akyempinhene, Oheneba Adusei Poku, called for collaboration between the government and the private sector to make life comfortable for farmers.

Source: GNA

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