Banking Sector UniBank takeover was ‘politically motivated’ – UCC lecturer

According to Prof. Gatsi, the seeming wrangling between the managers of UniBank and the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, may have led to the takeover.

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A Senior lecturer at the University of Cape Coast (UCC), Prof. John Gatsi, believes the Bank of Ghana’s takeover of UniBank was politically motivated.

According to him, the seeming wrangling between the managers of UniBank and the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, may have led to the takeover.

 

READ ALSO: Bank of Ghana takes over Unibank

On Tuesday many Ghanaians were thrown into a state of huge surprise following news that UniBank had been taken over by the BoG.

A statement from the Central Bank explained that the bank’s “capital adequacy ratio (CAR) has fallen below 50% of the required minimum of 10% (i.e. below 5%).”

Prof. John Gatsi play

Prof. John Gatsi

 

The statement said the bank will be put under the management of audit firm KPMG for the next six months, before it is returned to private ownership and management.

Sections of the statement read: “Under section 108 of Act 930, the Official Administrator is authorized to exercise a variety of powers to rehabilitate and return the bank to regulatory compliance within a period of six months, at the end of which the bank will be returned to private ownership and management.

“The appointment by the Bank of Ghana of the official administrator is aimed at saving UniBank from imminent collapse.”

READ ALSO: Ponzi Scheme: Thousands of Ghanaians lose millions to Savana Brokerage

According to the BoG, this “will prevent potential losses to depositors and other creditors, and ensure that the financial condition of the bank does not create further risks for the entire financial system.”

However, Prof. Gatsi, who doubles as an economist, believes the takeover was politically motivated, saying it may have resulted from what he described as “things going on” between managers of the bank and the Finance Minister.

“This is politically motivated because of the kind of things going on between the managers of uniBank Ghana Limited and the Minister of Finance,” he said.

According to him, he has serious doubts as to whether UniBank “can come to its feet after the six months period.”

He added that “the situation is not a good one”, especially when management of uniBank has not officially commented on it.

Prof. Gatsi noted that “most indigenous banks have been suffering and there’s the need to bring them up. It’s a matter of BoG ensuring that banks do not collapse unnecessarily.”

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