Former Finance Minister, Seth Terpker, is calling for amendments in law regulation within the financial sector to forestall a repeat of the situation leading to the collapse of some local banks.
This he notes, will help put up proper measures and bundle up the taxpayer from bearing the brunt whenever funds of depositors are mismanaged by their banks.
“In some countries, the shareholder has to be held accountable first,” Terkper told Super Morning Show host, Daniel Dadzie, Tuesday.
According to him, some advanced countries that have experienced similar situations, are “changing [from] putting everything on the taxpayer.”
“So maybe we have to revisit what other countries are doing and strengthen our laws,” advocated the man entrusted with the country’s economic policy and financial regulation during the John Mahama administration.
The Bank of Ghana in August 2017, revoked the licenses of two commercial banks – UT Bank and Capital Bank – after a 2014 Examination and Inspection Report by Boulders and Advisors Limited found that there was a significant amount of inter-group lending within the two banks.
This was after a review of two forms of related party transactions; first were loans granted to individuals and companies related to the bank and loans granted to companies connected to one another by ownership and directorship but unrelated to the bank group.
A year later, the central bank has collapsed five more local banks to form the Consolidated Bank Ghana (CBG) after they ran into liquidity challenges. The affected institutions are Royal Bank, Construction Bank, BEIGE Bank, Sovereign Bank and UniBank.
According to the Governor of the Central Bank, Dr. Ernest Addison, examination conducted into the operations of the five banks revealed a number of irregularities.
The government has subsequently issued bonds in the region of GHȼ8 billion as assets for the seven financial institutions which will be paid for by the taxpayer.
However, speaking for the first time on the issue, the former Finance Minister was emphatic that the time has come for the taxpayer to be insulated by learning from the experiences of some advanced countries because of the associated high fiscal costs the nation would have to bear.
“Luckily for us it has happened in many countries, some of the countries with the best financial systems were brought to their knees…and so we should probably look at what other countries are doing and try and insulate the taxpayer,” the former Parliamentarian suggested.