Business News of Tuesday, 7 February 2012
Source: Daily Guide
THE MANAGING DIRECTOR of ARB Apex Bank, Eric Osei Bonsu, has initiated a court action against his outfit and the Bank of Ghana for unlawfully seeking to terminate his appointment.
According to the MD, who is also president of the Ghana Institute of Bankers, only the board of directors of ARB Apex Bank could appoint a managing director and therefore the BoG’s interference in the extension of a contract handed him by the board of directors was out of place.
He said BoG was only be responsible for the regulation of the banking industry and since his appointment contract did not offend the provisions of the Banking Act, the resolutions of the board of ARB Apex Bank on 23rd September, 2011 made it clear that he was the MD of the bank for another four-year term.
Mr Bonsu has further called on the court to declare null and void all decisions taken by the BoG on a draft report of ARB Apex Bank’s external auditors including the advice it gave on 5th and 26th January, this year.
He is therefore demanding that his salary and all his entitlements due him for the entire duration of his extended four-year term should be paid including interest on all or any sums of money found to be due him from ARB Apex Bank.
The Apex Bank is a company incorporated under the laws ofGhanaengaged, among others, in the business of banking. It is also responsible for the supervision, monitoring and management of rural and community banks inGhana.
The beleaguered MD called for an injunction to be placed on the BoG and ARB Apex Bank to restrain them from appointing any person to the position of the MD of ARB Apex Bank during the entire four-year term of his employment or interfering in his employment in any manner whatsoever.
Mr Bonsu averred that he was appointed MD of Apex Bank after successfully going through all the processes for appointment to that position. By the terms of his appointment, he said, he had a four-year term which might be renewed by Apex Bank for a further four-year term, and that BoG’s role was just to be given prior notification by Apex Bank.
Noting that he was MD of Amalgamated Bank, now Bank of Africa between November 1, 2004 and November 30, 2007, Mr Bonsu said BoG found nothing negative about his previous appointments.
The board of Apex Bank duly extended his term for four years and communicated the decision to BoG. Mr Bonsu has since been on leave and enjoying his salary and the full benefits of his office as the MD of Apex Bank. He has within four years transformed Apex Bank from a bank whose performance was wanting into a vibrant bank which had exceeded its yearly targets. The transformation, he claimed, had gone down well with some officers who saw him as a stumbling block to their personal interests.
On 21 July, 2011, six out of the eight heads of departments of Apex Bank leveled a number of baseless allegations against him. A committee was set up and made a report to the board but nothing implicated him.
The petitioners, who were unsatisfied with the report of the committee and the decisions taken by the board, petitioned the BoG and copied various institutions including the National Security Secretariat and the BNI.