Dzodze must remain hub of oil palm - James Avedzi
Dr. James Klutse Avedzi, Member of Parliament (MP) for Ketu North has called on Dzodze citizens to sustain the oil palm plantation business by increasing acreages of the venture, the crop the area is famed for.

Date Created : 10/7/2022 12:00:00 AM : Story Author : Ewoenam Kpodo/Ghanadistricts

He said cultivating oil palm would not only create job opportunities for the youth, especially considering the economic activities connected to crop production such as crop processing, transportation and distribution but it would also make Dzodze the hub of the food crop.

Dr. Avedzi made the call at a durbar of chiefs and people of Dzodze to climax their annual Deza (Palm festival), instituted in 2002 to among others, salvage the oil palm from depletion, rejuvenate the oil palm industry in the area and foster unity, forgiveness and reconciliation.

Dzodze, in its formative years, was surrounded by thick forest, mostly oil palm, which shielded the people from regional warfare and slave trade activities.

Since most farmers engaged in oil palm cultivation then, the area was among the few towns in Ghana that had considerable oil palm plantation and actively featured as producer of palm products, including palm oil, palm kernel oil, palm wine, local dry gin (akpeteshie) and palm fronds for baskets and roofs to feed the nation and for exports.

The MP said the sustainability of the Palm festival depended on the cultivation of the oil palm to prevent its depletion in the area otherwise; it would be pointless to continue to celebrate the festival.

The 2022 Deza held on the theme; “Rekindling the spirit of Deza after Covid 19,” aimed to raise funds for the construction of a community centre to host the festival and other events in the area.

Mama Adeezordem II of Dzodze-Awlikorfe lamented the economic impact from the crisis of COVID-19, saying cross border trade activities of the Dzodze people suffered during the two years the country’s land borders remained shut.

“Transporting food crops to and from both sides of the border was made challenging by the border closure. Our mothers and sisters who also participated in petty trading were helpless because of the constraints the pandemic brought which had restricted their source of income.”

Mama Adeezordem was hopeful that following the lifting of the restrictions, businesses would get back on their feet with life returning to normalcy.

Mr. Anthony Avorgbedor, Municipal Chief Executive for Ketu North, admitted the negative impacts of the pandemic on his people and commended the government for the efforts aimed at reviving the economy.

He assured of the Assembly’s readiness to continue to create an enabling environment that would stimulate the local economy and urged citizens to do well to develop alternative measures to overcome the challenges.

Deza celebrated every first Saturday in October is preceded by an array of traditional and innovative programs like sightseeing at all farms that have multiple palm trees grown out of a single palm trunk, including the oldest seven-in-one palm tree (detiadre).