24
Wed, Oct

Governor of the BoG, Dr Ernest Addison

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Suffice to say with all these categories of checks, balances and people who were supposed to ensure a duty of care towards us, one thing runs through all - GREED!
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I have seen the eruption, I have heard the anger, I have viewed the various insightful angles that the banking crises has been looked at and without doubt it's a big issue.

With over $1Billion worth of taxpayers' monies going into the bailout, Ghanaians are right to be angry. Especially so when more taxes are demanded of them. It is sad. In Think the current BoG Governor has been brave in cracking the whips. For that I commend him and his team. That notwithstanding, we still need do the needful.

READ ALSO: MARRICKE K. GANE GIVES AWAY FREE COPIES OF 7 DWARVES & A BRIDGE

THE BANKS' DIRECTORS and BOARDS:

No matter how you cut the bread, one side is going to come up for sure - they were negligent and in most cases, intentional and ruthless in their recklessness with other people's monies. Bailing out may be for the poor customers, BUT not investigating, recovering and punishing these culprits, sends out the wrong signals to others, now and in the future, who owe the public a duty of care. These action will also force government to ensure they themselves walk around with clean slates and that they carry out their jobs with impersonal influence. It takes balls, but those balls are needed - whether in briefs or thongs. Beyond all that, Governance for organisations reaching a certain level of turnover needs to be taken extra seriously. I don't know if there is a Ghana Institute of Directors as in other jurisdictions but I would consider that apart from statutory audits, perhaps a specific Governance Audit once every 3 years to cover things like Conflicts of Interest, Decision making, Development etc. may be worth reconsidering.

THE CENTRAL BANK

It's become obvious, whether it is in relation to Acts 930, 673 or others, whether under the current or former Governors or Employees of BoG - the Central Bank was hugely complicit from the points of issuing licences, all through to supervising bank performances, giving liquidity support and shutdowns. Pure and simple - the SYSTEMS and LAWS existed, the PEOPLE entrusted to operate them, circumvented them. As harsh as it sounds, these persons need to be identified and extracted out of the BoG. The BoG cannot inspire confidence in a sector requiring high levels of Ethos if it cannot itself lead the way - the sanitization must be holistic, inside and out. I would suggest for the longer term, that EVERY industry has a standby (fast deployment) committee made up retired experts of repute, an MP each of opposing and incumbent standing and 2 spots for ordinary citizens with industry backgrounds, who get selected by random picks from a citizen voluntary list (a tangible way of getting citizens to be part of their democracy beyond just voting). This is an opportunity to establish new ground rules for the public sector reformation. Ground rules that scream loudly - "if you act with intent to screw people you ought to serve, there will be consequences enforced."

THE STATUTORY AUDIT FIRMS

I have an audit background too but I was disappointed, especially so because I have audited banks like GCB before and establishing whether or not a bank was meeting its statutory obligations is as straightforward as wearing a pair of trousers. So something went amiss. What did? I understand Audits are conducted on sample basis so not everything can be found, but I also will argue that audits well conducted over several years, should bring out some at least. I will further argue that it is exactly because we know number-audits may not always reveal everything, hence why auditors are required to conduct system audits to assure themselves that the SYSTEMS that are generating the numbers are working soundly. If both are done well (audit of numbers and systems) - the stench would have been known much earlier. Here, I would suggest the Institute of Chartered Accountants Ghana, starts publishing a RANKING table for all firms and each rank revised mid and year-end, to cater for firms' positive and adverse performances including involvements in such failures as we have seen in the banking sector. If firms know their complicit involvements can cost them jobs and visibility, they will have an extra incentive to display greater integrity.

PARLIAMENT OF GHANA

I genuinely don't know what to say about them.

CONCLUSION

Suffice to say with all these categories of checks, balances and people who were supposed to ensure a duty of care towards us, one thing runs through all - GREED!

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