Juapong Textiles Limited.
The Member of Parliament for North Tongu Constituency Honourable Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has engaged the British High Commissioner to Ghana, Her Excellency Harriet Thompson to revamp and expand the Volta Star Textiles Limited, formerly known as Juapong Textiles Limited (JTL).
The Volta Star Textiles Limited based in Juapong in the North Tongu District of the Volta region is said to be on the verge of collapse for so many years now.
As a way of revamping the Textiles factory, the Member of Parliament for the area, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa is liaising with the British High Commissioner to Ghana, H.E Harriet Thompson to help restore operations at the factory and its possible expansion.
As part of engagement processes to revamp and expand the factory, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has on Tuesday, 5th July, 2022 invited the British High Commissioner and her team of experts to North Tongu to inspect and ascertain the current state of the Volta Star Textile Company Limited.
Some Benefits Juapong Textiles Limited can provide when revamped
Speaking at a colourful event after about 30 minutes tour of the factory, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa says the factory when revamped can help in the promotion of the Africa Continental Free Trade.
He again said, the factory can solve a higher percentage of unemployment rate in North Tongu, Volta Region and by extension Ghana as whole.
He indicated that, the focus shall be boosting tourism and potentially revamping and expanding Juapong Textiles for more jobs.
The MP also called for an urgent measures to revamp the factory and pledged his support which started by bringing the diplomats.
Land for Juapong Textiles limited
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa disclosed that, the Chiefs of the Dorfor Traditional Area have given out a total of 65 acres of land for the Volta Star Textiles Limited, formerly known as Juapong Textiles Limited (JTL).
The Member of Parliament is delighted to have welcomed Her Excellency Harriet Thompson, British High Commissioner to Ghana and her team to his beloved North Tongu.
North Tongu DCE’s remarks
Speaking at the same event, the District Chief Executive for North Tongu District Assembly Honourable Divine Osborn Kwadzo Fenu also pledged his maximum support towards the factory. According to the DCE, it is time to put aside party colours and jointly work as one entity to develop the North Tongu District.
He explained that, development is his topmost priority and he shall support the Member of Parliament Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the Chiefs and the people of the area to revamp and expand the factory.
British high Commissioner H.E Harriet Thompson’s assurance to revamp amd expand the factory
On her part, the British high Commissioner said she will engage stakeholders in the coming days on how to rejuvenate the factory into a modern and befitting status to boost economic activities in the area.
According to her, Ghana and British have a long standing relationship and pledges to put in her all for the success of any plan towards the revamping and expansion of the factory.
She noted that, this happens to be her first ever official trips to the Volta Region, most importantly Juapong Textiles Limited, and she will make sure that, the request of the people are addressed.
H.E Harriet Thompson said, her team will lead a discussion between British and Ghana governments to identify the right infrastructure for the factory and how to finance it for possible revamping and expansion of the factory.
She acknowledged that, Juapong Textiles Limited is one of largest textiles factories in West Africa and when revamped can create more jobs for the people.
A Brief background of Volta Star Textiles Limited/Juapong Textiles Limited
Giving a detailed background of the factory, Togbe Agbohla VI Manklalo of Dorfor Traditional Area said, the Volta Star Textiles Limited formerly known as Juapong Textiles Limited (JTL) was established in 1967 by the late President Dr. Osagyefo Kwame Nkrumah.
He disclosed that, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah built the weaving block and they were importing cones from Turkey and Yugoslavia while the then Head of State, General I.K Kutu Acheampong, built the spinning block
Departments/Blocks of Juapong Textiles Limited
There are two main departments/blocks of the Volta Star Textiles Limited. These are Spinning Department and Waving Department.
The Spinning Department has the following sub-departments
4. Drawing in
7. Ring spinning
8. Cone winding
Waving Department also has the following sub-departments
1. Pen wadding
5. Drawing in
Collapse of the Juapong Textiles Limited
However, due to out-moded machines, the factory cannot generate enough graybafts to compete with international market.
Togbe Agbohla VI Manklalo of Dorfor Traditional Area again said, the factory collapsed in the year 2005 but, former President John Agyekum Kuffuor revamped it in the year 2008. The glorious days of the factory was 1972 to 1982.
Economic activities of the Juapong Textiles Limited
He again said, people from all walks of lives patronizes the goods from the Volta Star Textiles Limited. One significant aspects of the factory is “nothing is waste” because, even the waste cotton also serves as pillow industry for women in the communities. It also creates employment avenue for livelihood and empowerment for women.
Volta Star Textiles Limited has contributed immensely in terms of social economic activities of the Volta Region and the country as a whole.
The Volta Star Textiles Limited has Basic School built by Blue Sky and a football team which ones featured in the Ghana Premier Leagues.
Accommodation and water treatment plant
The company has fifteen (15) bungalows to accommodate the senior staff. It has its own water treatment plant which serves as good drinking water for the factory as well as Juapong township.
The total workforce those days was 3,000. Some of the youths who did not have the opportunity to continue their education were gainfully employed in the factory. Currently, the factory employs about 750 workers.
Direct Beneficiary Districts
It will astonish you that, the Volta Star Textiles Limited serve the whole country more especially, Yilo-Krobo District, Manya Krobo District, Asuogyman District all in the Eastern Region and North Tongu District in the Volta Region respectively. Volta Star Textiles Limited is one of the largest textiles factories in West Africa.
Some challenges facing the Juapong Textiles Limited
Togbe said, the current situation of the factory is that, the machines are out-moded and cannot function proper as it used to be so many years ago.
“The factory needs retooling or new machines to be revamped and expanded. The demand of the factory’s finished products is so high that, the factory could not meet the demand of the market.”
Also, the factory cannot afford efficient payment of its workers due to low productivity.
“We are appealing to Her Excellency, the British High Commissioner Harriet Thompson to endeavour and assist us get investors to procure some machines to revamp the factory to elevate the poverty among the youths, women, and children. The collapse of this factory has adverse effects on our livelihood, economic hardship, school dropout and the youth resorts to social vices.” Togbe Agbohla VI Manklalo of Dorfor Traditional Area added.
He explained that, “Dorfor State has a vast land, those days, we cultivates cottons at Akotex Farms, Ghana Farms, in the year 1968 under Ghana Cotton Development Board of Ministry of Food and Agriculture.”
In a closing remarks, Togbe Agbohla VI appreciates the British High Commissioner for coming to Juapong in the North Tongu District to assist the current challenges of unemployment in the District, and the country, especially the youths and to alleviate poverty.
“We the Chiefs and elders of Dorfor Traditional Area are ready to assist the British High Commissioner in providing any local needs such as, land, cotton to furnish the e factory and for export as well.”