Fatima Ali became the youngest president of Kuapa Kokoo Farmers Union – the largest Fairtrade Cocoa Farmers’ organization in Africa. She was appointed by her fellow NEC members after the sudden demise of the former president - Mad. Christiana Ohene Agyare in 2013.
Miss Fatima was born in 1981 and became a member of Kuapa Kokoo Farmers Union (KKFU) in the year 2000. That same year, she was elected as the Recorder of Alikrom Society. Alikrom society can be found in the Western Region of Ghana precisely in the Akotombra District.
Fatima Ali joined Kuapa Kokoo after completing her Senior Secondary education. Her decision to become a farmer was met with disparaging remarks from peers who see farming as a backward profession. According to her, ‘’most of my friends tried to talk me out of my decision to become a cocoa farmer because in their view, farming was the preserve of illiterates’’. I told my father who is also a farmer and a member of Kuapa Kokoo about my decision to join him and he gladly agreed to guide me. He told me about the fact that Kuapa was a cooperative and that members have a say in the way things are done. ‘’I must say that I was encouraged to join... the thought of farmers having a say in the way a company is managed actually intrigued me’’!
Averagely, Fatima Ali produces between 55 and 60 bags of cocoa per year. She started farming with a small farmland but is now a proud owner of a 12 acre farm.
The youngest Kuapa president believes her decision to go into farming and choosing Kuapa has turned to be a very good decision ‘’never in my wildest dreams did I think of holding such a position. I am a woman and also very young but because of the training I have received from Kuapa Kokoo; I just know that I can achieve anything I put my mind to’’ boasts Fatima Ali who is eligible to contest for the Kuapa presidency during the coming elections this July.
Miss Fatima credits Kuapa for the improvements witnessed in her life and that of her community ‘’thanks to Kuapa Kokoo, my society Alikrom has a borehole and for the past 11 years, we have been drinking clean water. Before we got this facility, we had to walk for miles to fetch water from a stream. I remember I once got sick and when I was taken to a hospital; my dad was told I have typhoid fever which is a water borne disease. Since we got this borehole, no one in my family has suffered from that illness.
I have been able to enroll my only child in a private school because as she puts it “I am now financially independent. My cocoa also weighs more in the Kuapa Kokoo. I receive yearly bonuses from Kuapa. I have assisted my father to complete our family house. We now live in a block house!”
Her ambition is to work assiduously for Kuapa to become better than she met it and to inspire the youth into farming.” It is also my wish that during my tenure of office, Kuapa will scale up the formation of women groups in all its operational districts”.
Fatima Ali advices all members and staff of Kuapa Kokoo to effectively work to improve the growth of productivity in the organization.
KUAPA !!!!!!!! PA PA PAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!