Otumfuo calls for revival of the poultry industry

Nana Kwaku Amankwa Sarkodie, Sawuahene, presenting the Overall Best Unversal Bank Award to Absa Bank Ghana Limited on behalf of Otumfuo.

…at Ashanti Business Excellence Awards

The joint 19th Ashanti Business and Financial Services Excellence Awards and the 8th Ashanti Business Leaders Excellence Awards ceremony has been held at Kumasi.

The theme for this year’s combined awards ceremony which was ‘Post-Pandemic Economic Recovery through Business Excellence’ and it was organised by Top Brass Ghana under the auspices of Manhyia Palace.

According to Mr. Isaac Dakwa, Director of Top Brass Ghana, the singular rationale for the institution of the three awards schemes is to demonstrate Otumfuo the Asantehene’s  appreciation for the enormous contributions of the business community and financial institutions as well as individual captains of businesses and finance to the economic development of Ashanti and the nation at large.

Otumfuo was represented at the ceremony by Nana Kwaku Amankwa Sarkodie, Sawuahene.

Simon Osei-Mensah, Ashanti Regional Minister, was the Guest of Honour at the awards ceremony, which was held under the chairmanship of Ing. Prof. Nana Osei-Wusu Achaw, Vice-Chancellor of the Kumasi Technical University (KTU). In view of the two personalities being out of the jurisdiction, they were represented by Mr. I. K. Acheampong, a Director at the Ashanti Regional Co-ordinating Council and Prof. Gabriel Dwomoh, Pro Vice-Chancellor of KTU, respectively.

In his address, Otumfuo bemoaned the current dismal predicament of Ghana’s once vibrant poultry industry, which has been a pale shadow of its former high status. He was appalled that Kumasi-based poultry industry giants – such as Darko Farms, Akate Farms, Topman Farms and Boris B’s Farms which once made Kumasi to be generally acknowledged as the poultry capital of Ghana – were operating at woefully low capacities due to the influx of imported poultry products.

Otumfuo, therefore, made a passionate appeal to government to adopt pragmatic initiatives, including financial assistance aimed at creating the conducive environment in which the poultry industry can thrive, emphasising that rejuvenating the poultry industry to expand production to meet local demand will not only generate employment for the Ghanaian youth, but will also save our nation the colossal amounts of foreign currency which Ghana expends annually on the importation of poultry products from abroad.

Otumfuo also expressed concern at the unsettling turbulence which has characterised Ghana’s foreign currency market, noting that since the beginning of the year, there has been an astronomical depreciation of the cedi against Ghana’s major currencies, particularly the US dollar.

Otumfuo had no doubt that the Bank of Ghana was doing its best to remedy the situation, but urged the central bank to urgently take the requisite steps within its competence to return the foreign currency market to stability in order to bring predictability to Ghana’s export and import trade as well as other international financial transactions.

On his part, Mr. Osei-Mensah stated that government was aware that many businesses had been hard-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

He pointed out that government recognised the critical role that micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) played in the economy, and had therefore, put in measures to address the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on businesses.

These measures included the provision of GH¢100 million through the Ghana COVID-19 Alleviation Fund and Re-vitalisation of Enterprises Support Programme to support MSMEs in the country.

The regional minister further gave the assurance that the ongoing discussions between the Ministry of Finance and the International Monetary Fund would be concluded in good time to restore confidence in the Ghanaian economy.

Various companies and personalities were honoured at the awards ceremony, including Bar Naas Catering Services (Tourism/Catering); Booomers International Limited (Manufacturing/Bamboo Bicycles); Danleo Hostel (Tourism/Hospitality); Diaby Limited (International Trade/Cashew Export); and Springs and Bolts Company Limited (Manufacturing/ Automotive Parts) received silver awards.

Gold awards were conferred under the Business Excellence Awards Scheme on Aspee Pharmaceuticals Limited (Healthcare/Pharmaceutical Manufacturing); Brigina Catering Services (Tourism/Airport Catering); Crystal Radiovision Network Limited/Crystal TV (Media/Broadcasting); Hafiziya Plastic Waste Management Company (Sanitation/Waste Management); Ibrahim and Sons Company (Manufacturing/Timber Processing); and It’s My Kitchen Restaurant (Tourism/Catering).

Other business gold award-winners were Noda Hotel Limited (Tourism/Hospitality); Olam Cocoa Processing Ghana Limited (Manufacturing/Cocoa Processing); Passion Air (Transportation/Air Transport); PMMC Jewellery Limited (Manufacturing/International Trade (Jewellery); Royal Foam Ghana Limited (Manufacturing/Foam Products); Stadium Hotel Limited (Tourism/Hospitality); and Sunset Hotel (Tourism/Hospitality).

Among the financial institutions honoured were Amansie West Rural Bank Limited (Rural Banking/Loan Disbursement); Asante Akyem Rural Bank Plc. (Rural Banking/Customer Service); Asokore Mampong Rural Bank (Most Promising Rural Bank); Bank of Africa (Universal Banking/Consumer Finance) and Donewell Insurance Company Limited (Non-Life Insurance/Customer Service).

Other financial services excellence award-winners were Enterprise Insurance Company Limited (Non-Life Insurance/Personal Accident); Enterprise Trustees (Pensions); Glico General Insurance Company Limited (Non-Life Insurance/Motor); Glico Life Insurance Company Limited (Life Insurance/Education); Metropolitan Life Insurance Company Limited (Life Insurance/Product Innovation); Odotobri Rural Bank Plc. (Rural Banking/Deposit Mobilisation) and Old Mutual Company Limited (Life Insurance/Investment Linked).

The rest were Prudential Bank Limited (Universal Banking/Small-Medium Enterprise Finance); Republic Bank (Ghana) Plc. (Universal Banking/Home Finance); Stanbic Bank Ghana Limited (Universal Banking/Intra-African Trade Finance); Star Assurance Company Limited (Non-Life Insurance/Product Innovation); Vanguard Assurance Company Limited (Non-Life Insurance/Travel) and Zenith Bank (Universal Banking/Advisory Services).

Four financial institutions received the top-most awards, namely: Atwima Kwanwoma Rural Bank (Overall Best Rural Bank); SIC Insurance Plc. (Overall Best Non-Life Insurance Company); SIC Life Insurance Limited (Overall Best Life Insurance Company) and Absa Bank Ghana Limited (Overall Best Universal Bank).

Finally, four outstanding captains of businesses were decorated under the Ashanti Business Leaders Excellence Awards Scheme. They were Hajia Maria Adamu-Zibo, Managing Director, Federated Commodities Limited (Cocoa Marketing); Dr. Boris Baidoo, Founder and Managing Director, Boris B’s Farms and Veterinary Supplies Ghana Limited (Veterinary Services/Agricultural Production -Poultry); Mrs. Kosi Yankey-Ayeh, Executive Director, Ghana Enterprises Agency (Business Development); and Dr. Justice Yaw Ofori, Commissioner, National Insurance Commission (Insurance Regulation).

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