Komenda Sugar Factory shuts down barely one month after commissioning
According to prior plans, the Komenda Sugar Factory has been closed down, barely a month after President John Dramani Mahama commissioned it on May, 30.
According to reports from Citi News, the $35 million factory is currently inactive. Some sources say the sugar factory shuts down as a result of worker agitations over unpaid wages. But the Public Relations Officer of the Trade Ministry, Nana Akrasi-Sarpong, who confirmed the closure to Citi News debunked the claims.
Mr. Akrasi-Sarpong explained that the shutdown was a programmed one which had been made mention of on a previous occasion. He said that lack of sugar cane is the reason for the shutdown. Making reference to other countries like Brazil, he emphasized that sugar factories normally operate for a period of time and never all round the year. He indicated that the factory will resume full operations in October 2016.
This current development is contradicting earlier disclosures made by the Trade Minister that the factory is “100 percent ready for operation”, as well as a subsequent one in which he said it will be shut down after 6 months.
The hurried commissioning of the Komanda Sugar Factory by President Mahama has been followed by massive criticisms. Especially from the perspective the the government is fully aware that the raw material [sugar cane] needed for production, is not available.
One of such criticisms came from founder and leader of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP), Dr. Paa Kwesi Ndoum, who suggested that President John Dramani Mahama and his administration lack the required capacity to effectively run the Komenda Sugar Factory. The renowned entrepreneur queried the government over where they intend sourcing adequate raw materials for the running of the factory.
He further questioned the rationale behind government’s decision to borrow money to revamp the factory, even when they have no ready source of raw material to power it.