Checks by Citi Business News at a number of Consolidated Bank Ghana branches on Monday, February 24, 2020, did not indicate that payment for customers of defunct microcredit, microfinance and savings and loans companies, was taking place as expected.
Following President Akufo-Addo’s assurance of payment from 24th February, during the state of the nation address, the Receiver, Eric Nana Nipah, announced that only customers who receive messages notifying them should turn up for payment.
But Citi Business News’ visit to some offices of CBG on Monday did not confirm that any affected customer had reported with proof of the notification message for payment.
At the Head Office of CBG at Airport, some officials who did not speak on the record said they were ready to facilitate payments once a customer turns up with the notification message and relevant documents.
When President Akufo-Addo said that some 5 billion cedis had been made available to the receiver for disbursement from 24th February, some customers doubted him, since according to them, several promises in the past had not been fulfilled.
Meanwhile, the Coalition of Affected Savings and Loans Customers which had doubted the President’s assurance, wants the Receiver and the Bank of Ghana to consider migrating them to new accounts to make it easy for them to access their funds.
The Leader of the Coalition, Kofi Sarpong, voiced their frustration to Citi Business News after some affected customers in the Ashanti Region visited CBG branches for their monies but were asked to leave.
“The receiver is talking about receiving text messages first. We have made a lot of complaints that some of our members are illiterates and semi-literates; so it may be difficult for them to read the text messages and go there. But the simplest and shortest way is that migrate us, create our accounts with our balances and give us opportunity to go there. That will even reduce the frustrations people are going through, reduce the anxiety people are going through and the stress.”
“As I am talking to you, most of us don’t even know our balances; so we are pleading with the government and the Bank of Ghana that they should make available our balances so that when we can go there and verify the information we gave the receiver, we will know it’s accurate,” he said.
Per the receiver’s statement, the 347 microfinance companies, 23 savings and loans and finance houses, as well as 39 micro-credit institutions with outstanding obligations, will be paid in either cash or bonds.
The release also points out that the bank has chosen to payout customers’ funds, and will open new accounts for affected customers whose claims have been validated and accepted for payment.
The Consolidated Bank Ghana in an earlier statement said customers whose locked-up funds exceed the GHS20,000 cap will have another investment account created on their behalf where they will be paid using the bond which will mature later.
Corporate and SME customers of defunct financial institutions are also not left out in this bout of fresh payments. The bank says such customers will receive a default savings account that will be opened and communicated to them by the Receiver.