You are here: HomeBusiness2021 06 22Article 1292590

Business News of Tuesday, 22 June 2021


'Some savings accounts operate like current accounts' – Bankers Association argues BoG directive

John Awuah, Chief Executive of the Ghana Association of Bankers John Awuah, Chief Executive of the Ghana Association of Bankers

• The Bank of Ghana (BoG) has directed banks to put an end to charging customers unfairly

• But the Bankers Association argued some savings accounts operate like current accounts

•The directive is under Section 3 of the Banks and Specialised Deposit-Taking Institutions Act, 2016 (Act 930)

The Ghana Bankers Association has expressed displeasure over the central bank’s directive requesting banks and financial institutions to desist from deducting maintenance charges on savings accounts.

According to Chief Executive of the Association, John Awuah argued the move might be challenging to implement as some savings accounts are technically operated like current accounts.

“The target is not even the banking industry. It has to do with other participants in the financial system. It is, for this reason, we support largely, not entirely, the cancellation of some charges. We need to treat the customers fairly.” he explained in an interaction with Citi Business monitored by GhanaWeb.

“Savings accounts are not meant for daily withdrawals. But we see people link their MoMo wallets to it, use ATMs for withdrawing money from the account, etc. This makes the accounts lose their character. What the banks are saying is that, in cases where customers use accounts designated for investments as current accounts, they are to be levied accordingly. To that extent, we have a bit of a challenge,” he added.

The Bank of Ghana in a statement issued on Friday 18, 2021, directed banks and Specialized Deposit-Taking institutions to refrain from applying some seven different fees and charges and desist from engaging in some unlawful bank practices.

The fees and unfair charges amid the unlawful practices identified by the central bank include: Credit Insurance Premium Overcharges, Maintenance Fees on Savings Account, among others, Over the Counter (OTC) Withdrawal Charges as well as the requirement by some banks for borrowers to make them part owners in some assets they present for use as collateral for loans.