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Rejoinder: GN Savings & Loans Breached the Foreign Exchange Act; They were Disrespectful to BoG

The Director of Communications at the Bank of Ghana (BoG), had commented that, the BoG was not able to come to the aid of the struggling GN Savings and Loans because the officials of the Savings and Loans company disrespected the BoG.

It is recalled that, the Chairman of Group Nduom, Dr. Papa Kwasi Nduom, stated that the collapse of his bank was largely influenced by the former Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta, who at the time, was at the helm of affairs as Finance Minister.

These allegations made by Dr. Papa Kwasi Nduom was rejected by the Communications Director at the Central Bank who described the allegation as false and unfounded.

According to Mr. Otabil, GN Saving and Loans violated the financial regulations including the  Foreign Exchange Act of 2006 (Act 723) which led to the closure of the bank.

He said, “At the end of the day, it is not in the interest of the central bank or we don’t go out there and say this institution must actually be closed down at all cost.  It depends on how the institution is run, it depends on what the institution itself has stated that it wants to do and on respecting the prudential norms. In fact, let me make it clear that the GN Bank and GN Savings and Loans were actually disrespectful to the central bank.

“For instance, if you go through the books you will see that there was a transfer of dollars, and pounds and Euros to International Business Solutions which is an institution affiliated to the group network based outside which was in direct breach of the Foreign Exchange Act of 2006 (Act 723). These provisions are there. Our statement of August 16 2019, we stand by that statement and in that statement, we have given all the reasons behind the revocation of the license of GN Savings and loans.”

However, in a rejoinder by the PPP, a party founded by Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, stated that, “Moreover, Mr. Otabil could not, by any known principle in law and in business, visit the alleged, contested and debunked infractions supposedly committed by GN Bank against GN Savings. The Bank of Ghana cannot punish a person for the alleged crimes and offenses of another.”

The rejoinder which was issued by the National Chairman of the party, Nana Ofori Owusu, reiterated that, the Bank did not violate any law neither did the financial institution engage in any financial misconduct.

Rejoinder: GN Savings & Loans breached the Foreign Exchange Act; They were Disrespectful to BoG

The Progressive People’s Party (PPP) has read a publication attributed to the Director of Communications of the Bank of Ghana, Mr. Bernard Otabil.

In that publication, Mr. Otabil was shamefully heard dismissing statements made by the Chairman of Groupe Nduom, Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom that ‘the Central Bank was influenced by the former Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta to collapse GN Savings & Loans’.

Again, Mr. Otabil justifying the revocation of the license alleged that, ‘GN Savings & Loans breached the Foreign Exchange Act 2006, (Act 723)’ and that “GN Savings and GN Bank were actually disrespectful to the Bank of Ghana.”

First of all, Mr. Otabil’s attempt to justify the reckless and wicked decision of the BOG to collapse financial houses points to our long-held position that, the revocation of the license of GN Savings & Loans was not based on any serious analysis of the bank’s overall situation but it was born out of political considerations, the abuse of the combined powers of the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Ghana and on the egos of emotionally unstable people exercising regulatory authority.

When Mr. Otabil mentioned “GN Bank” and “GN Savings” in his interview with Media General, he didn’t know, as the Damage Control Officer of the Bank of Ghana, that the two entities he mentioned were different and distinct legal persons. To educate his ignorance and lack of understanding, we want to point out to him that, GN Savings was licensed in January, 2019 as a Savings and Loans Company. GN Savings did not have the permission to engage in any form of foreign transactions.

In fact, between January 2019 and August, 2019 (when the Savings & Loans license was withdrawn), GN Savings did not engage in any foreign transactions, let alone breach any provisions of the said legislation referred to by Mr. Otabil.

Moreover, Mr. Otabil could not, by any known principle in law and in business, visit the alleged, contested and debunked infractions supposedly committed by GN Bank against GN Savings. The Bank of Ghana cannot punish a person for the alleged crimes and offenses of another. What was necessary for the Bank of Ghana to do, to save the thousands of jobs and protect local businesses, was to recognize the huge infrastructure debt owed to the entity by the government of Ghana and its agencies.

Unfortunately, the Bank of Ghana, as an able and willing partaker in the wicked conspiracy to collapse a thriving Ghanaian business, allowed itself to be misled by the Ministry of Finance to disregard the infrastructure portfolio.

For the avoidance of doubt, the Bank of Ghana did not undertake or conduct any regulatory inspection on the activities of GN Savings between January, 2019 and August, 2019. That explains the hurriedly conjured compilation of alleged violations and infractions of GN Bank as a pretext and an attempt to find a basis to revoke the license of GN Savings. 

The PPP will not allow any public servant, who is motivated by their myopic and cheap desire to earn a gold watch at the expense of the tax payer, when they retire from the Bank of Ghana, to disparage the conduct of legitimate business, in their attempt to find a non-existing justification for the reckless decision that led to the revocation of the license of GN Savings & Loans.

The PPP is determined to make every effort for the restoration of all banking licenses wrongfully taken to mark the end to the abuse of regulatory power to destroy local businesses and entrepreneurs. We need to embrace a new Ghana where local businesses are nurtured, protected, and promoted.

We remain wide awake to the agenda of national unity, cohesion, using the state purchasing power to promote local businesses to guarantee the creation of sustainable jobs for the youth, majority of whom remain unemployed.

 
Long Live Ghana.

Awake!

Sign:

Nana Ofori Owusu
(National Chairman)