Ivory Coast Cocoa Body Deputy MD Is Said to Resign Over Sales

A deputy head of Ivory Coast’s cocoa regulator resigned after falling out with the body’s managing director over the unscheduled sale of beans over the past two months, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Lamine Claude Bamba quit his position of less than three months as deputy managing director in charge of statistics and international marketing at Le Conseil du Cafe-Cacao on Thursday, said the people, who asked not to be named because the information isn’t public yet. Bamba resigned after he didn’t tell Managing Director Yves Kone about the sale of 180,000 metric tons of cocoa, said the people.

Mariam Dagnogo, a spokeswoman for the regulator known as CCC, didn’t answer calls seeking comment.

In December, the CCC sold 100,000 tons of cocoa to processors and exporters to create a buffer should some shippers default, people familiar with the matter said at the time. The sales were conducted directly with the buyers, rather than through the usual auctions. Last week, the CCC sold an extra 80,000 tons after favorable growing conditions resulted in better-than-expected deliveries of the beans, according to people familiar with the matter.

Bamba’s appointment was approved by the government in November, three months after Kone took over as the regulator’s MD from Massandje Toure-Litse in August.

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