Banking sector clean-up: We’re partnering with state agencies on prosecutions- BoG Governor

The Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison, has expressed some reservations about the processes being used in the prosecution of officials found culpable in the banking sector crisis.

He however says although the banking sector regulator has no control over the judicial processes, it is collaborating with the relevant state agencies to ensure that justice is served.

Dr. Addison made the comments when he appeared before the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament.

“In terms of the processes, we wish that it could have been faster. But I think that we are working on it. We are supporting the Attorney-General’s Department with some materials to help them prosecute shareholders and directors that are culpable,” he said.

The Bank of Ghana, between 2017 and 2019, revoked the licenses of nine local commercial banks and over four hundred financial institutions comprising Micro-finance, Savings and Loans as well Finance Houses, for violating various regulations guiding their operations.

This affected about 4.6 million depositors whose monies could have been lost completely had the regulators not taken the action.

According to the Finance Minister, the clean-up cost the country US$4 billion, which is about GH¢21 billion.

It all began in August 2017, when the Bank of Ghana (BoG) gave GCB Bank Ltd the green light to acquire two local banks UT and Capital bank due to severe impairment of their capital.

Later in August 2018, the Bank of Ghana consolidated five other local banks into the Consolidated Bank Ghana Limited.

Then in May, 2019, 347 microfinance companies also had their licenses revoked by the Bank of Ghana.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in November 2019 also revoked the licenses of 53 Fund Management Companies.

SEC, in a statement explained that the action was taken pursuant to Section 122 (2) (b) of the Securities Industry Act, 2019 (Act 929) which authorizes SEC to revoke the license of a market operator under some circumstances.

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