Some customers whose monies have been locked up as a result of the collapse of some Savings and Loans companies and microfinance firms are not convinced that they will be given their monies soon as promised by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
President Akufo-Addo on Thursday, reiterated his government’s resolve to give back customers of the defunct institutions their locked up monies beginning Monday, February 24, 2020.
“I am informed that the Receiver of the Savings and Loans and the Microfinance institutions will on Monday 24th February , begin making payments to their customers, [with] these monies totalling GH¢5 billion being in addition to the GH¢13 billion being paid to the customers of the failed banks,” Akufo-Addo said when he delivered the State of the Nation Address in Parliament on Thursday, February 20, 2020.
“I will like to repeat that all depositors of the savings and loans and microfinance institutions including DKM which collapsed in 2015, will receive a 100% of their deposits once the validation exercise is concluded,” the President added.
But the customers say several assurances had failed to yield positive results hence they don’t believe this recent promise.
One of the leaders of the Coalition of Affected Savings and Loans Customers, Kofi Sarpong in a Citi News interview urged the government to release a roadmap for the payments.
“First and foremost, we want to thank the President for his bold decision. It’s a bold decision he has taken but I want to say that we are not satisfied and we even believe that the president is deceiving us. The honest truth is that on 24th December 2019, the President said that he was going to pay us 100% for which we all applauded him for that and secondly, the Vice President also echoed that and the Finance Minister also said we are going to be paid in full.”
“This means that almost all the top hierarchy in terms of finance had given us the assurance and from then till now, it’s almost two months and we have not seen any plan by the Bank of Ghana, the Ministry of Finance or the Receiver. So we want to plead with the President that, if he wants to really pay us this time, we want to see evidence,” Kofi Sarpong stated.
The Bank of Ghana revoked the licenses of some 23 insolvent savings and loans companies and finance houses in 2019.
The central bank in a statement on Friday, 16th August 2019, said the revocation of the licenses of these institutions was necessary because they were insolvent even after they were given a reasonable period of time to recapitalize.
The Bank of Ghana also appointed Eric Nipah as a Receiver for the specified institutions in line with section 123 (2) of Act 930.
The government had given some assurances about payment of the monies to the depositors with unmet deadlines. For this reason, the coalition doubts of payment by the government.
Locked up cash
The collapse of a number of financial institutions led to their collapses and left clients in distress.
President Nana Akufo-Addo had assured depositors whose funds were locked up in collapsed microfinance institutions and savings and loans companies that will have their monies paid back to them.
Nana Akufo-Addo said he has been meeting the Finance Minister and the Governor of the Central Bank to address the issues of depositors.
“Both the Finance Minister and the governor of the Bank of Ghana were with me yesterday. We are continuing to work out how quickly we can meet the commitment to ensure that everybody’s monies are refunded.”
President Akufo-Addo gave similar assurances in December 2019 during his Christmas message to Ghanaians.
He assured that they will get 100 percent of their deposits.
“Thus far, the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Ghana have worked together to guarantee payments of 100% of deposits of customers of the failed banks which is being done. I have directed the Ministry of Finance to work with the Bank of Ghana to ensure that same applies to customers of microfinance and Savings and Loans Companies whose licenses have been revoked,” he said.
But almost two months on, the promise is yet to be fulfilled.