Collapse of Heritage Bank, two others painful – Kweku baako

BY: Graphic Business
Kweku Baako

Editor in Chief of the New Crusading Guide, Mr Abdul-Malik Kweku Baako, has bemoaned the collapse of the erstwhile Heritage Bank, describing the action as a “painful” one.

He said he was happy to see the Alhaji Seidu Agongo, the majority shareholder of the collapsed Heritage Bank, owning a bank that was doing well.

As a result, he said: “It was, therefore, painful to see his bank going down.”

Speaking on Accra-based Peace FM, Mr Baako said he felt similar hurts about the collapse of uniBank and GN Bank.

“I felt for the three banks: Nduom’s bank [GN Bank], Heritage Bank that belongs to that young man, Seidu Agongo (because of his extension into radio we met a couple of times in 2014 and 2015) and Dr Duffuor’s bank [uniBank]”, he said on the station’s morning show.

“Mr Agongo is a young man and I appreciated him and I wanted to see a young man like him doing great things. It was therefore painful to see his bank going down,” he stated.

On the case of uniBank, he said “Dr Duffuor is a personal friend but the action taken against the banks was not right”, he added.

The Bank of Ghana revoked Heritage Bank’s licence in January 2019, stating, among other things that the majority shareholder, Alhaji Agongo, was unfit to own the bank.

The resort to fit and proper in the revocation of the licence stemmed from the allegations that Alhaji Agongo used proceeds of fraudulent contracts he executed for the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) to set up the bank.

Following the revocation of the licence, Alhaji Agongo responded with a press statement in which he said that the “not fit and proper” tag stamped on him by the central bank was “capricious, arrogant, malicious and in bad faith”.

He added that the Bank of Ghana had made him “a victim of indecent haste.”

“In purportedly making the determination, the central bank obviously had little regard for the time-honoured principle that a person is presumed innocent until proven guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction.

“The fact that I have a case pending before the High Court is a matter of public knowledge but my guilt or innocence is yet to be determined by the Honourable Court,” Alhaji Agongo noted in the press release.

Also, the erstwhile Board of the Bank, which was led by Professor Kwesi Botchwey, issued a statement on the matter in which it said: “Heritage Bank was by the Bank of Ghana’s own admission, a solvent bank.

“It never received liquidity support from the Bank of Ghana. Its corporate governance record had never been impugned by the Bank of Ghana. We believe we have been done a grave injustice and a terrible precedent set that does not bode well for the future”.