President Nana Akufo-Addo has said his government has paid all the locked-up deposits in the nine local banks that collapsed and 98 per cent of the funds that got stuck in the over 386 microfinance institutions, finance houses and savings & loans companies that also went down.
The banks and financial institutions were collapsed by the Bank of Ghana within a space of two years in a clean-up exercise of the financial sector.
In the mid-year budget review that was recently presented to Parliament, Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta said the government is spending GHS21 billion in picking up the tabs for the clean-up exercise.
Speaking on Koforidua-based GBC-owned Sunrise FM in the Eastern Region on Tuesday, 4 August 2020, President Nana Akufo-Addo said the state is not indebted to any Ghanaian or institution that fell victim to the collapse of the nine local banks.
“All those who had deposits in the banks, all of them, their monies have been refunded”, the President said.
“Let me repeat it: All those whose savings were in the banks, all those savings have been refunded and paid to the people”, he stressed.
The President said but for the central bank’s intervention under his watch, the depositors would have lost all their funds since the affected banks were already on the brink of collapse.
“In fact”, he noted, “the intervention of the central bank was all to protect their savings because many of the banks that finally went into receivership were about to collapse”, adding: ‘Their situation was dire, and if they had been allowed to collapse, all those deposits would have gone up in smoke”.
He said: “As far as the microfinance and savings & loans institutions are concerned, 98 per cent of the deposits of the funds have also been paid”.
The President conceded: “There is still a balance”, noting: “The receivers, Nipah and the others, are working on it and I believe Nipah has gone so far as to say that by the end of August, all of them would have been paid”.
“Yes, there are still some in the system that have not received their money but the effort is being made to make sure that they are paid”, he said.
Recently, former President John Mahama, who is seeking a comeback, promised to pay all locked-up funds of the customers of Menzgold Company Limited and other financial institutions should he win the 7 December 2020 polls.
Speaking at an event in Accra to outdoor Prof Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang as his running mate, the flag bearer of the NDC said: “My heart goes out to the many who have been affected by this Government’s unjustifiable collapse of Ghanaian-owned financial institutions”.
“It is heart-wrenching to hear government officials justify the huge amounts it is spending to manage the impact of the collapse, now put at 21 billion Ghana cedis”, he bemoaned.
The former President said: “I weep for the many who have lost their jobs, the many who have lost their businesses, the many who have lost their livelihood among others”.
He pledged “on behalf of the NDC that we shall pay within one year all who have funds locked up with the collapsed financial institutions. Within one year. I promise!”
“We shall not put up any long-term payment plans that will further worsen the living conditions of the victims.
“As has been introduced in other economies, the next NDC Administration will establish a Financial Services Authority that will be responsible for ensuring that consumer financial markets work for consumers, providers and the economy as a whole.”
“The Authority will oversee all financial products and services that are offered to consumers, and will effectively and efficiently prevent and stop the challenges that have confronted customers of Menzgold, DKM among others.
“We will restore Ghanaian indigenous investment in the banking and financial sector through a tiered banking structure in order to restore viable credit sources for Ghanaian SMEs. We will make amends for those whose businesses were collapsed due to political victimisation”, the former President said.
Also, Mr Mahama said: “We will send all contractors with valid contracts who have been sitting at home for 4 years without being paid for legitimate work done for government back to site”.
“We will make immediate arrangements to pay them their hard-earned monies deliberately withheld by the Nana Addo administration due to politics”.