Arrested Managers Of Microfinance Operations In BA
Aggrieved customers of some troubled microfinance companies in the Brong Ahafo Region yesterday showed open hostility towards the Bank of Ghana at a public forum in Sunyani.
The customers, whose investments were locked up with DKM Diamond Microfinance, God Is Love Fun Club, Jastar Motors and Investments Company Limited, Eye Adom Fun Club, Care for Humanity Fun Club, Little Drops Association and Perfect Urge, claimed they were rather hurt more by the Bank of Ghana after the public forum on the way forward.
A lot of the customers stayed away from the government-engineered forum where five operators of the collapsed schemes were paraded in handcuffs.
The Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) had arrested Martin Kuudening Delle, Managing Director of DKM Financial Services; Noel Nortey, the Nkoranza Branch Manager of God Is Love Fun Club; Charles Asum, Managing Director of Jastar Group of Companies and Monica Afriyie, popularly called Maame Korkor, Managing Director of God Is Love.
Yesterday another operator was also paraded in handcuffs, bringing the number of arrests to five.
A few customers who attended the forum were in an angry mood after hearing speeches by officials of BoG, which they described as a waste of time, money and an exercise in futility, insisting that nothing could stop them from chasing their monies.
BoG Forum On Microfinace Group In BA
As security operatives led the five suspects in handcuffs into the hall, everybody wanted to catch a glimpse of them, with the paparazzi and others using cameras and mobile phones to take snap shots of them. They were sent away after some few minutes.
The aggrieved customers said bringing in the five arrested microfinance operators to the forum was a deliberate effort by government and BoG to throw dust into their eyes.
They questioned why the organisers did not allow them to answer questions at the forum.
An aggrieved customer from Nkoranza, Victor Quarshie, lamented that bringing them in handcuffs to the forum was a wasted exercise.
The forum, which most aggrieved customers had thought was to explain the way forward on how to receive their locked up monies, rather turned out to be a rehash of all the things they knew already, they said.
One customer who went out of the hall before the close of the forum said, “Government is only interested in distancing itself from the problem, but not to retrieve our monies for us.”
Contrary to the expectation that the event would attract a large number of customers who would hear something favourable from BoG, most people rather boycotted it, leaving an empty hall to the amazement of journalists and some government and BoG officials.
Due to this, the programme, scheduled to start at 10am, rather commenced around 12noon, as organisers were waiting for more people to fill the vacant seats. The few who came were eventually disappointed.
The participants included chiefs, security officers, queen mothers, journalists and a few victims of the scam.
The unusual number of police presence also drove some customers away.
DAILY GUIDE gathered that some customers, on reaching the venue, had to return because of the number of police officers they saw, as they could not be sure of their safety, it was gathered.
Security Scare Customers Away From The Forum
When Remold Amanfo, Head of Banking Supervision at the BoG took the floor, he explained why they had to place a moratorium on the microfinance operators. When he paused for questions, people started murmuring, indicating that they had not heard anything new.
Almost all those who commented said they thought they were coming to hear modalities that would be used to invite them for their monies after President Mahama had hinted that the operators’ assets would be liquidated and proceeds shared to them.
They shouted at BoG officials and said the latter should be charged for causing financial loss to the state.
After the forum, DAILY GUIDE observed that the customers were more disappointed, desperate and anxious than before.
The Regional Minister, Eric Opoku and the Omanhene of Nkoranza, Okatakyi Agyeman Kudom V, had to run away before the forum closed.
It would be recalled that the youth of Nkoranza were last Thursday angry with their Omanhene for trying to reverse curses invoked on Electoral Commission officials by the youth, who asked them not to set foot there to conduct the district level election.
The youth therefore dared the Omanhene to refund their investments for them before allowing elections to take place in the district.
FROM Daniel Yao Dayee