Bank cleanup plus Mahama legacy debts cost taxpayer GHS33bn – Ofori-Atta

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Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has disclosed that the legacy debts inherited from the Mahama administration by the Akufo-Addo government, plus the amount of money spent in cleaning up the banking and financial sector, amount to a total of GHS33 billion.

The financial sector cleanup exercise was undertaken by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) resulted in the collapse of nine banks by the end of 2018 after the regulator reviewed the minimum capital requirement to GHS 400 million from GHS120 million and revoked the licences of some insolvent banks.

Presenting the 2020 budget and economic policy statement to parliament on Wednesday, 13 November 2019, Mr Ofori-Atta stated: “If you add the cost of cleaning the financial sector challenges in addition to the long list of legacy bills that the Akufo-Addo government had to settle, the cost to the Ghanaian taxpayer is around GHS33 billion”.

The collapse of the nine local banks birthed the Consolidated Bank Ghana (CBG) Limited.

Heritage Bank Limited (HBL) was the latest to be added to Consolidated Bank Ghana Limited (CBG), which was first formed when the central bank collapsed some five local banks in August last year.

On 1 August 2018, the central bank announced the consolidation of the local banks. They included the Royal Bank, The Beige Bank, The Construction Bank, Sovereign Bank and uniBank. Later on, HBL and Premium Bank were added to the first five.

The BoG on August 14, 2017, had earlier approved the takeover of UT Bank and Capital Bank, by GCB Bank Limited.

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