The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has refuted assertions that it deliberately collapsed Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom’s BlackShield (formerly Gold Coast Fund Management) which was part of some 53 fund management firms whose licences were revoked for various infractions.
Dr Nduom, a businessman and politician, who founded the Progressive People’s Party (PPP), is Chairman of Groupe Nduom, a conglomerate that operates various businesses.
During the bank clean-up exercise by the Bank of Ghana (BoG), which involved an upward adjustment of the minimum capital requirement by banks to GHS400 million in 2018, Dr Nduom’s then-GN Bank was downgraded to a Savings and Loans company.
Shortly after that exercise, the BoG collapsed 347 microfinance companies, 23 savings and loans firms and some finance houses of which Dr Nduom’s reclassified GN Savings and Loans was part.
The defunct Gold Coast Fund Management, an investment firm which is a subsidiary of Group Nduom, was subsequently rebranded with different investment portfolios to meet the demands of its clients.
But SEC collapsed the investment firm, citing several reasons which Dr Nduom has described as “misleading and/or untrue statements”.
Responding to questions concerning the recent licence revocation of the investment firms on Class 91.3FM’s Executive Breakfast Show (EBS) on Tuesday, 12 November 2019, SEC's Deputy Director-General, Mr Paul Ababio, refuted claims that Dr Nduom was being persecuted by the government.
“I don’t think that is accurate,” he stated in reply to a direct question about whether Dr Nduom was being targeted.
He continued: “I don’t think that is the case. We are technocrats, we are professionals, we try to adhere to the highest standards of professionalism”.
He pointed out that “from a transparency perspective, we have given these people [fund management firms] chances to address their issues. We have seen the customer complaints; it wasn’t just SEC coming to make up things”.
“We have seen customer complaints, we've seen regulatory infractions, we've seen portfolio concentrations and it is at the back of these that we take some of these actions,” he added.