BoG equally liable for collapse of banks — Asantehene

BY: Daniel Kenu, KUMASI
Nana Joseph Bonsu (left) CEO of Nexbon,  receiving the Best Gas Station award
Nana Joseph Bonsu (left) CEO of Nexbon, receiving the Best Gas Station award

The Bank of Ghana (BoG) cannot absolve itself from the recent ‘catastrophe’ that has rocked the banking industry, leading to the collapse of a number of financial institutions, the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, has stated.

He said either deliberately or as a result of its weak supervision, the regulator could not have been ignorant of happenings in the banking and financial sectors over the years.

The Asantehene said this in a speech read on his behalf by the Sawuahene, Nana Kwaku Amankwaa Sarkodie II, at the 15th Ashanti Business and Financial Services Excellence Awards in Kumasi last Friday.

More than 50 institutions engaged in all kinds of business were recognised, including the GCB Bank, the State Insurance Company and Nexbons Gas, a private gas retail company in Kumasi.

The awardees were presented with citations and shields.


Bold decision

While blaming the Bank of Ghana for the lapses, the Asantehene also commended it for the bold decision it had taken to salvage the industry.

He called for support in realigning and reinforcing the rules and regulations that governed the activities of the sector and how it could stabilise and grow the economy.

The Asantehene urged Ghanaians not to lose hope in the banking sector and the entire financial sector but rather back the government as it reformed the sector.

He called for discipline in the granting of loans to directors and their cohorts, which he said was one of the main contributing factors leading to the crisis.

Otumfuo Osei Tutu ll challenged business owners in the region to make the Ashanti Region the most attractive business destination.

He also urged local businesses to partner the government in the housing industry to provide high quality, yet affordable housing units for the people.

Finance Minister

In a speech read on his behalf by the Ashanti Regional Director of the Controller and Accountant General’s Department, Mr Paul Asumadu, the Minister of Finance, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, said the government would soon resort to e-payment systems in transacting business with the public.

He said it came at the back of the government’s quest to drive down technology in every aspect of Ghanaian life, including the paperless port process and the national identity cards.

On the recently launched mobile interoperability, Mr Ofori-Atta said the system had, as of June this year, recorded GHc25.36 million in transactions.

Nexbons

Nexbons Gas was singled out for praise as an award winner for its contribution to reducing flooding in the suburb of Anloga Junction.

Following recent floods that killed five persons, the Chief Executive Officer of Nexbon, Nana Joseph Bonsu, constructed drains to divert the flow of rainwater to bigger drains at the junction, where his company is also located.

A citation accompanying the award said with over 20 years in the industry and creating more than 100 jobs for the youth with outlets scattered across the region, Nexbons had shown leadership and was helping to grow home-made businesses in the region.