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Business News of Friday, 15 February 2019

Source: ghananewsagency.org

GN Bank customers demand swift payment of deposits

Over 700 aggrieved Customers of GN Bank and Gold Coast Securities Company in Upper West Region have given the defunct Bank two weeks ultimatum to pay them appreciable amounts of their deposits.

According the customers, their deposits ranging from GH¢100,000.00 to GH¢200,000.00, have been locked up with the Gold Coast Securities, a full-service investment entity under Groupe Nduom.

Spokesperson for the aggrieved customers, Mr Isaac Niebabora, told the Ghana News Agency that GN bank ought to reactivate its E-bank and Mobile Money systems to allow customers transfer their monies to various mobile money networks for withdrawal.

He also suggested if the bank could not make liquid cash available to customers for withdrawal, or the officials should give customers bank drafts for payment into other bank accounts for easy accessibility for their monies.

Mr Niebabora said he was unable to further his education last year after gaining a competitive university admission because his money was locked up with Gold Coast Securities.

He urged Gold Coast Securities Company to as matter of urgency pay all customers, whose monies had matured for withdrawal as well as all matured fixed deposits.

He also called on the Central Bank to intervene, suggesting that, the GN Savings and Loans Company should be merged with the GCB Bank or any other viable bank for smooth financial transactions, “if the bank [GN] cannot solve their liquidity problems in three weeks”.

The customers warned that failure by Groupe Ndoum and its Board of Directors to comply with their demands would compel them to employ other avenues mandated and approved by law to have early access to their hard earned monies.

Mr Niebabora expressed grave concern about how customers had to grapple with extreme discomfort, lowered productivity, loss of love ones, collapse of their businesses, children being sacked from schools ,with some developing severe medical conditions due to consistent sleepless nights.

The Bank of Ghana downgraded GN Bank to a savings and loans company in January 2019 due to liquidity challenges.

This was after the Central Bank finished what it described as the banking resolution requiring each commercial bank operating in the country to have a minimum capital of ¢400 million.

The Central Bank Governor, Dr Ernest Addison, had said an advisor had been appointed for GN Bank to ensure its smooth transition to a micro-finance company.

“GN Bank (GN) was unable to comply with the Minimum Capital Directive by 31st December 2018. Consequently, GN Bank has applied for, and the Bank of Ghana has approved the grant of a savings and loans company license.

“The Bank of Ghana has also approved a transition plan submitted by GN for winding down aspects of its business, which are not compatible with a savings and loans company license,” Dr Addison said.

He had pledged that the BoG would closely monitor the implementation of the approved transitional plan, which is expected to be completed by the end of June 2019.

According to the governor, the Advisor would hold office until otherwise advised by the Bank of Ghana and will furnish the Bank [BoG] with a status report on GN in three months.