Attempts to use Pension Funds to save Indigenous Banks: NAGRAT fires government

Government’s announcement that it is structuring a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) with Pension Funds, to help save some indigenous banks from falling through the cracks of the Bank of Ghana’s (BoG) reform, has incurred a strong warning from the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT).

NAGRAT is cautioning that any attempt by the government to move money from graduate teachers’ pension fund to the Ghana Amalgamated Trust (GAT) will be passionately resisted.

“If anybody sends one pesewa to the GAT it’s a violation of the rules because we do not know any GAT,” Angel Kabonu, President of NAGRAT, said in an interview monitored by What’sUp News.

GAT, according to the government, is a special purpose vehicle that has been structured with mainly pension funds to help five solvent but well run indigenous banks, which could not meet the BoG’s deadline for all banks to meet a new minimum capital requirement of ghc400million, to meet the requirement.

The five banks are listed as; Agricultural Development Bank (ADB), National Investment Bank (NIB), Universal Merchant Bank (UMB), Prudential Bank and OmniBank/BSIC, a merger of OmniBank and Sahel Sahara Bank.

Since the announcement of the arrangement by the Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison, questions have emerged as to what the pension funds that the government wants to leverage are.

Mr. Angel Kabonu said in the interview monitored by What’sUp News that whatever the funds that government is eyeing, it should make sure that they do not include those of NAGRAT.

According to him, it has become necessary to issue the forewarning because even though the government has said vaguely that the pension funds are private ones, “the amount of money that private pension fund can come up with in relation to the government workers is absolutely insignificant.”

He said that any attempt to move funds belonging to graduate teachers will be against the rules of the three-tier pension fund scheme because per the rules any such tampering with funds must be sanctioned by the fund managers and stakeholders.

But as things stand now, he said, NAGRAT’s pension fund managers do not know who the GAT is. “When was this GAT established? Every institution that deals with any pension Trust must sign an agreement but that agreement they signed, if anybody has done it on our blindside, then please the situation is going to get murkier as the days go by. As far as I am concerned, where I sit, no agreement has been signed with any institution called GAT. If somebody has gone to pledge allegiance to the GAT that is in violation of the rules.”

Source: Whatsup News

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