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Opinions of Monday, 13 August 2018

Columnist: Benjamin Alpha Aidoo

Dr. Kwabena Duffuor; An impressive citizen

Dr. Kwabena Duffour (M) Dr. Kwabena Duffour (M)

Setting the Records Straight – the Unibank episode

In recent times, the nation has been hurled into some chaos within the banking industry in Ghana. We have witnessed the roars of the central bank especially through its very outspoken boss, Dr. Addison.

In the heat of this discord, we have paid critical attention to the language of the nation’s treasury, and also of the players involved in these various indigenous banks.

The bank of Ghana through its spokespersons have sort to create an unfortunate impression by mixing the issues regarding the recent bank takeovers.

According to the Regulator, there were instances where owners or shareholders of some the banks appropriated depositors funds in acquiring properties in their individual names, among others. There is a lot of spin around this very unfortunate development in the nation’s financial sector to achieve some manipulated effect.

If certain individuals are liable for acts that violate the guidelines governing the banking sector, the regulator is encouraged to take the right measures to ensure those individuals take full responsibilities for their actions, but not to crucify people in the media and mischievously rope in innocent persons.

It is possible to have a passionate conversation about the substance of the banking industry without discrediting and destroying the very persons whose initiatives have played a critical role in sustaining the financial sector as well as their industrious contribution to nation building.

It cannot be a crime to contribute one’s quota to the socio-economic development of our nation by a demonstration of solid entrepreneurial abilities.

The canker of demonizing the solid achievements of Ghanaian citizens, if not stopped, will discourage others especially, young people on building on their initiatives.

All assets acquired by Unibank in line of its banking operations, were decided by the Board and management of Unibank and these assets are lodged in the name of UNIBANK and nothing else. These assets are registered in the name of corporate shareholders and not in the name of any individual whether as a director or a shareholder.

A careful search for instance at the Lands commission reveals no truth further than this. For emphasis, none of those assets is registered in the individual name of Dr. Kwabena Duffuor.

Dr. Kwabena Duffuor’s success in commerce did not begin with the event of Unibank

In 1985, thus, 16 clear years before Unibank was birthed, Dr. Kwabena Duffuor established ‘Star Assurance Company Limited’, with now lots of remarkable achievements in the insurance industry in Ghana. Dr. Kwabena owned a fishing vessel and boats as at 1986 and subsequently entered into commercial farming in the late nineties.

Now the Unibank Trajectory –

Unibank Gh. Ltd, was established in 2001. In 2003, Dr. Kwabena Duffuor became a shareholder of Unibank and by continuous capital investment, he became the majority shareholder of the bank in subsequent years.

As at the year 2009, February, when the distinguished Professor of Law, the Late President Evans Atta Mills, called on the good hand of Dr. Kwabena Duffuor, to manage the economy and finances of this nation, Ghana. Let it be emphasized, his academic and professional achievements as an economist, banker and finance expert did the lobbying for him in the determination of the late President to deliver an economic buoyancy as a stellar for the sub region.

Till today, there arguably has not been a Ghanaian finance Minister worth the qualification of Dr. Kwabena Duffuor.

Dr. Kwabena Duffuor’s competent hands finds its best expression in the recorded feat of the economy supervised by him between the years 2009 and 2012. Not only did we place as a country, as the fasted growing economy in the world, we also saw a conscious attempt to run the longest single-digit inflation target. The 14.2 GDP growth rate is the highest ever recorded in our republic since Dr. Nkrumah declared our nationhood in 1957.

In 2009, before Dr. Duffuor took this role as finance minister of Ghana, he did appoint a trust to manage his investment interest in Unibank, whiles relinquishing his role as the Chairman of the Board

Points to note!

? Unibank has employed currently over 2000 contract and direct staff. This excludes other workers who have had a stint with the bank over its seventeen years life-span.

? Dr. Kwabena Duffuor’s impeccable integrity and values as a Ghanaian, does not permit him to appropriate public funds for himself. It’s on record and we wish to remind Ghanaians that, the man Kwabena Duffuor, who declined his monthly Salary and allowances, nor lived in a state Bungalow, or used State Vehicles, and even sacrificed the Ex-gratia due him when he served as the Minister of Finance for four years, has not changed. To him, political service is simply service to the Nation and he has not abandoned those virtues. There is a very scanty list of Ghanaian citizens who have demonstrated this gesture and sacrifices to the nation.

? Dr. Duffuor is a registered member of the NDC and he has greatly supported the Party in so many ways. Therefore, it is not surprising that this cynical and cruel agenda are being deployed by opposition political actors who consider him as a threat to their survival and therefore, must be oppressed and destroyed. The political infrastructure planted to destroy the brand of Dr. Kwabena Duffuor with the view of his ‘political future’ in mind would not stand the shrewdness of the TRUTH!

Power is transient! And the chance to serve a country is a chance to build its indigenes not to destroy them.
Thanks for the read.