The Bank of Ghana (BoG) has justified the construction of a new headquarters, insisting that its current head office, built in the 1960s, is no longer fit for purpose.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) at a press conference on Tuesday, August 8, accused the Bank of Ghana of building a new head office at an alleged amount of $250 million.
“Perhaps the more troubling fact is that, having brought the Bank of Ghana to this terrible financial state, the Governor and his deputies, have found it prudent and expedient to invest $250 million (GHC2.8 billion) on another Head Office building somewhere at Ridge. In our circumstances, this is the height of insensitivity in the management of the finances of a troubled country,” Minority Leader, Cassiel Ato Forson said.
In response, the Central Bank argued that a structural integrity assessment conducted on the current office revealed that the building did not satisfy the full complement of excess strength required for a building to be considered safe for usage.
The BoG added that in the case of a worst-case gravity and wind loading scenario, for example, unusually strong wind, the building may be significantly affected.
“A structural integrity assessment conducted by the BoG revealed that the current BoG Head Office building, built by the Nkrumah Government in the early 1960s, is no longer fit for purpose and could not stand any major earth tremors.”
“The outcome of the structural integrity work was that the main building does not satisfy the full complement of excess strength required for a building to be considered safe for usage. This means that in the case of a worst-case gravity and wind loading scenario, for example, unusually strong wind, the building may be significantly affected.”
“The building also does not have the required strength to withstand the expected imposed significant earthquake loads that would be expected to occur in the Accra area. Based on the above, and looking at the strategic objective of positioning Ghana as the financial hub of the subregion, with prospects of a potential headquarters for a future regional Central Bank, The Board and Management of the Bank considered a new Head Office building as the most important priority project to support the operational efficiency of the Bank, and also position the Bank of Ghana in a very good position to be the host of the regional Central Bank as we currently host the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) of the Sub-region.”