The Minority National Democratic Congress (NDC) Caucus in Parliament has called on the government to as a matter of urgency institute a bipartisan committee to probe into what occasioned the rise and fall of the two insolvent banks, UT and Capital Banks.
“We think that this situation needs to be investigated so that if it is true that actions or inactions by owners and managers of these banks actually resulted in the banks’ collapsing. I believe that the state will have to take action. It is appropriate and it should be done to serve as a deterrent going forward so that you cannot just open a bank, play with depositors’ money and in the end you think that you can just go scot free,” Minority Spokesperson and Ranking Member on Finance, Casiel Ato Forson told journalists at a press conference in Accra on Tuesday.
The group further called on the Rt. Hon. Speaker of Parliament to invite the Minister for Finance and the Governor of the Bank of Ghana to brief the House about the collapse of the two insolvent banks and to give assurances that depositors will not suffer no loses.
On Monday, the Bank of Ghana announced the complete takeover of Capital and UT Banks (CAP-UT) by the GCB Bank Limited after revoking the licences of the two commercial banks.
The central attributed its actions to the severe impairment of the capital of the two banks.
In the view of the Minority NDC MPs, they couldn’t have agreed more than the action taken by the central bank since it was the right decision meant to protect depositors’ hard earned money.
They urged all depositors and customers of Capital and UT Banks to exercise some restraint while they (NDC MPs) monitor the activities of the acquiring banks, GCB Banks, Bank of Ghana and PriceWaterHouseCoopers.
“We strongly urge these three institutions being BoG, GCB and PriceWaterHouseCoopers and in this case the Ministry of Finance that could assume any ultimate fiscal risk under the banking laws to ensure strict adherence to distinct benefits of the purchase and assumption transaction so that no single depositor loses his or her investment. Needless to say, should this happen, it will result in an unforeseen burden on the tax payer instead of the original owners of UT and Capital Banks,” Mr. Ato Forson emphasized.
To avert any future occurrence, the NDC MPs want the Banks of Ghana to further strengthen its supervisory and monitoring responsibilities, noting that it beats their imagination as to why Capital and UT Banks will win several enviable awards in recent high profile ceremonies and yet be declared insolvent banks.
They further urged that Bank of Ghana to ensure that the acquiring bank, GCB Bank, which is the largest indigenous bank with both private and public shareholders, is not overburdened unnecessary with non performing loans and impaired assets.