Founder of the now-defunct UT Bank, Prince Kofi Amoabeng, has been arrested, today Tuesday, January 14, 2020 over the collapse of the bank.
The respected business mogul has already been prepared for the Accra Circuit Court IV.
The Bank of Ghana on Monday, August 14, 2017 revoked the licences of UT and Capital banks due to their insolvency, leading to a seamless takeover of the two banks by GCB Bank.
UT Bank, which was trading on the Ghana Stock Exchange, had its listing status also suspended.
Provisional figures released by the central bank showed the total liability of UT Bank stood at GH¢850 million while its total asset was pegged at GH¢112 million.
Mr. Amoabeng has since the revocation of the licence of UT Bank been a subject of investigations for what the Bank of Ghana has termed as “willful deceit”.
The Bank of Ghana on August, 7, 2017 declared UT Bank and Capital Bank insolvent after it failed to meet the minimum capital requirement.
“Despite repeated agreements between the Bank of Ghana and UT Bank and Capital Bank to implement an action plan to address these significant shortfalls, the owners and managers of UT Bank and Capital Bank were unable to increase the capital of the banks to address the insolvency,” BoG statement said.
Already, former CEO and founder of Capital Bank, William Ato Essien is standing trial on 26 charges, including stealing of various sums in excess of GHS260 million.
Prince Kofi Amoabeng who is the president of UT Group of companies, recently said he still finds it very difficult in understanding why the government of Ghana closed down UT Bank despite interventions by some UT investors to bail them out.
“If UT Bank owed 800 million and an investor comes and says I’m ready to pay half of it (400 million) and Bank of Ghana (BoG) writes off the 400 million but decides to close down the bank which will cost the nation at least 2.2 billion, it didn’t make sense” he said on the ‘KSM Show.’
The business mogul said it is easier to lose that 400 million than to incur a cost of about 2.2 billion on a country like Ghana, plus collateral damages, unpaid staff among others.
“It’s as if the government did not take their time to really evaluate the options they had but when people say that the action is to get to me, then it is really ridiculous because you can’t get me. If you target me, you target the wrong person,” he told his critics.
He reiterated that UT Bank as a listed company had about 15,000 shareholders whose investments were just disenfranchised because of the bank’s closure and nothing has happened to them.
Amoabeng advised that as individuals “when things are going on very well, we have to ask ‘God why me’ but when things are not going on well, then we need to ask ‘God what’s next?’”.
He said he always feels sad anytime he sees ex-staff of UT Bank selling along the road or indulged in menial jobs.
He further indicated that he was the last person to hear of the collapse of his bank even though a day before the collapse, he had spoken to the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta, who never mentioned of the collapse until 8 am that he called his daughter.