The State has amended its charges against the Founder of defunct Unibank, Dr. Kwabena Duffuor and some former executives over their alleged roles in the bank’s collapse.
The one-time Central Bank Governor and Finance Minister, is standing trial with a former Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Johnson Asiama, and other former executives for alleged fraudulent breach of trust, money laundering, contravention of the Bank of Ghana Act and Conspiracy to commit crime.
The State on Thursday, June 18, added three more charges to the 68 already leveled against them.
According to Citi News’ Sixtus Dong Ullo, the accused persons have however been admitted to bail, and the case adjourned to July 16th and 17th for case management conference.
Director of Public Prosecution, Yvonne Attakora Obuobisa, told the court presided over by Justice Bright Mensah that the State has also made available its evidence against the accused persons and is ready to proceed with a trial.
The Attorney General has accused Dr. Duffuor, who was also a shareholder of uniBank of using the HODA Group, to take money from the bank and “dishonestly” transferring depositors’ funds.
According to the Attorney General, Dr. Duffuor and HODA Group allegedly dishonestly received more than GH¢660 million from uniBank.
In the case of Dr. Asiama, he has been accused of using his position as 2nd Deputy Governor of the BoG to approve the transfer of GH¢300 million which was an unsecured facility from uniBank to the Universal Merchant Bank (UMB).
According to the AG, Dr. Asiama knew that uniBank was in financial distress, but he allegedly went ahead to approve the deal.
The other accused persons in the case include the son of Dr. Duffuor, Dr. Kwabena Duffuor Jnr, who was the CEO of uniBank before it collapsed, Ekow Nyarko Dadzie-Dennis; the Chief Operating Officer of the collapsed bank, Elsie Dansoa Kyereh; Executive Head of Corporate Banking, Jeffery Amon; Senior Relationship Manager, Benjamin Ofori; Executive Head of Credit Control, and Kwadwo Opoku Okoh; Financial Control Manager.
uniBank went into official administration on March 20, 2018, and eventually collapsed on August 1, 2018. The local bank was one of five banks merged by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) into the Consolidated Bank Ghana Limited.
Official Administrator, KPMG, in the course of its duties discovered that about GHS5.7 billion was owed by shareholders of uniBank as of March 20, 2018.
The GHS5.7 billion was the focus of a previous suit by Nii Amanor Dodoo who was acting as the Receiver.
Among other things, the bank’s interest income and other sources of income were said to be insufficient to cover the associated cost of funds of underlying borrowings and liabilities, as well as overheads of about GHS0.31 billion per annum.
These claims have however been challenged by the bank’s directors, leading to a suit by Dr. Duffuor to get the court to declare the license for the Consolidated Bank null and void.