Fertilizer Missing At CRIG, Tafo

Dr. Stephen Opuni - COCOBOD CEO

Dr. Stephen Opuni – COCOBOD CEO

Information reaching DAILY GUIDE , yesterday indicated that about 716 bags of fertilizer had gone missing at the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG), Tafo in the Eastern Region.

The fertilizer, estimated at GH¢43,000, was meant to be distributed to coffee farmers free of charge, but some staff of the Cocoa Research Institute allegedly connived with their bosses to smuggle the stock to Cote d’Ivoire, according to sources.

The theft was uncovered when stock was being taken by staff of the accounts, stores, audit, security and soil science departments. Meanwhile, a five-member committee has been formed to investigate the alleged malfeasance.

A preliminary investigation by the committee has indicted three people at the Soil Science Research Department of the institute.

According to information, a vehicle with registration number GW 5914 U in which some of the indicted people were travelling with the commodity, ran into an electric pole at Tafo.

The suspects, as gathered, made an instant payment to the director of the Electricity Company of Ghana in the area for destroying the pole so as to avoid being exposed.

One of the suspects also allegedly sold over 400 bags of fertilizer to a businessman in Kumasi, who then smuggled the consignment to Cote d’Ivoire.

DAILY GUIDE sources said a staff at the Soil Science Research Department was also accused by a vigilant security officer (name withheld) of conniving with a ‘big man’ there at the time, to steal over 1,000 bags of the fertilizer.

The security officer was subsequently dismissed from the company after he had made the accusation.

Some shop owners at Tafo and its environs have confirmed purchasing fertilizer from the indicted persons.

The CEO of CRIG, Dr. Anim Kwarpong, who took over six months ago, has confirmed the story to DAILY GUIDE , adding that he was shocked by the revelations.

He added that management would not shield any person involved in the deal.

Dr. Kwarpong also asserted that the three indicted persons would be interdicted this week.

Meanwhile, the police and the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) have taken over investigations into the matter.

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