A PRIVATE company has registered 350 needy people including widows, orphans, the aged and the disabled at Kwatire, a farming community in the Sunyani West District in the Brong Ahafo Region for the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
A cassava starch processing factory at Kwatire, Kofi Vinyo Company Limited (KVCL), spent GH¢3,000 on their registration as part of the company’s social responsibility to the community.
The $700,000 factory, which is under construction at Kwatire and scheduled to start operations next year, is an initiative of Mr Kofi Vinyo, a Sunyani-based philanthropist and a businessman, with financial support from the Sunyani branch of ECOBANK.
At the ceremony to register the needy people at Kwatire, the company donated a 21-inch colour television set to the Kwatire Health Centre which serves the people of Kwatire, Adentia, Odumase and their surrounding villages.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Managing Director of KVCL, Mr Vinyo, said the company saw good health as an important asset for every human being and, therefore, decided to sponsor the registration of the underprivileged in the society to enable them access quality health care.
He stated that even though the factory had not begun operation, he wanted the people in the town to know that the company would be committed to its social responsibilities when it starts production next year and would employ about 700 inhabitants of the town.
He added that the factory would process cassava into starch for industrial use and export, adding that the target was to produce 14,000 tonnes of starch for export annually.
The managing director said the company was expected to cultivate 2,000 acres of cassava by the next major farming season and had also planned to assist individual farmers who were interested in cassava production to do so.
Mr Vinyo, however, appealed to the government to assist the company by providing the necessary security and also to enable it import machines from China for its operations.
The Sunyani West District Chief Executive (DCE), Mr Kwadwo Osei Asibey, lauded Mr Vinyo for the investment and commended the company for fulfilling its social responsibility to the community even though it was yet to start production.
He appealed to residents of Kwatire and its environs, especially the youth who would be direct beneficiaries of the factory, to cooperate with the investor to ensure the success of the project.
The DCE also pledged the district assembly’s support for the company.
Mr Asibey called on chiefs in the area to release more land for the expansion of the factory when the need arose since it was part of their contributions towards job creation.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Sunyani Municipal Health Insurance Scheme, Ms Victoria Manu, appealed to wealthy people in the society to help less fortunate ones to register with the scheme, and thanked Mr Vinyo for the gesture.
The Sunyani West District Director of Agriculture, Madam Joyce Takyi, stressed the economic importance of cassava and urged residents of Kwatire who were desirous of going into cassava production not to hesitate to do so.
The Sunyani Branch Manager of ECOBANK, Mr Haruna Alhassan, called on the people of Kwatire to lend their support to the project to ensure its success.
He also urged people who would be engaged when the factory starts operations to cultivate the habit of saving in order to get soft loans from the bank.
The Managing Director of KVCL, the DCE and the other dignitaries later toured the factory site to see the progress of work.