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Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr Ernest Addison has said some of the court proceedings initiated against shareholders of the collapsed banks have been delayed by owners who have tried to use unwarranted challenges to the statutory powers of the BoG and the Receivers, to frustrate all attempts to hold them accountable for the mismanagement of depositor funds.

He stated that the relevant laws provide for redress for persons who feel aggrieved by the exercise of the Bank of Ghana of its statutory powers, and while there are laid down procedures prescribed by law to seek redress, and these laws are not intended to subvert the course of justice for depositors  and taxpayers whose funds were used by Government to pay for depositors’ claims.

In his key note address at the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce Industry CEO business forum, Dr Addison said “at this stage, permit me to use this platform to provide some updates on the banking sector clean-up we undertook a few years ago.

“The decision to close (9) banks and (411) SDIs was necessitated by the urgent need to protect the financial system from institutions that had become insolvent and unable to meet depositor withdrawals due to erosion of their capital base through excessive risk-taking, mismanagement, and poor corporate governance. Government’s decision to provide funds to the tune of GHC 19 billion for payment of depositors whose funds had been locked up in the failed banks and

SDIs, helped to provide liquidity in the system and thereby helped to prevent our economy from grinding to a halt.”

He added that the receivers appointed by the Bank of Ghana to wind down the affairs of the failed banks and SDIs have been tasked to realise value by repossessing and selling the remaining assets of these banks to enable the Government to recover the money spent, which has contributed to the high level of debt of the country. Over the last three years, the Receivers’ asset recovery efforts including chasing those who borrowed money and shareholders of these defunct banks and SDIs who took loans and advances from them and never paid back, has been frustrated especially through the use of the Court system.

“Some of these Court proceedings have been delayed by shareholders who have tried to use unwarranted challenges to the statutory powers of the Bank of Ghana and the Receivers, to frustrate all attempts to hold them accountable for the mismanagement of depositor funds.

“The relevant laws provide for redress for persons who feel aggrieved by the exercise of the Bank of Ghana of its statutory powers, and while there are laid down procedures prescribed by law to seek redress, and these laws are not intended to subvert the course of justice for depositors  and taxpayers whose funds were used by Government to pay for depositors’ claims,” Dr Addison added.

“While I am on this, I might add that running to Parliament to seek redress for the revocation of an institution’s licence, is not one of the processes laid down under law for those who feel aggrieved by a licence revocation by the Bank of Ghana. There are already a number of actions filed in court and at arbitration by the same persons who run to Parliament for cover, and the Bank of Ghana’s simple response to

“Parliament is respectfully to allow the pending legal processes to run their course.

“Indeed, sometime in September 2018, the 7th Parliament undertook a formal inquiry into the Financial Sector Clean-up, the factors that led to it, and the manner in which it was carried out.

“Among other things, the Finance Committee of Parliament invited all the key actors such as the Ministry of Finance, the Governor of the Bank of Ghana, the shareholders of the defunct institutions, the Receivers, among others to appear before it and to answer specific questions aimed at assisting the Committee to understand the events surrounding the clean-up exercise.

“The Bank of Ghana cooperated fully with the Committee and  provided all the necessary information to assist its members reach their own conclusions. We had hoped that the Committee would make its Report available to the House and to the public after its deliberations, but we heard nothing more on that.”

By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana

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