Banking Sector Reforms; Let Build Our Own Case Studies to Make Teaching Relevant Locally

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Kofi Bentil, vice President of Imani Africa

Vice President of Policy Tink Tank, Imani Africa, Mr. Kofi Bentil has charged academics in Ghana to “document what is happening in our Banking sector for teaching in our universities.”

According to Mr. Bentil Ghana must “build our own case studies and make teaching more relevant locally.”

Banking Sector Reforms
The Banking Sector in Ghana has been undergoing some reforms since the New Bank of Ghana Governor, Dr Ernest Addison, was appointed in 2017.

In August 2017, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) gave GCB Bank Ltd the green light to acquire two local banks, UT and Capital Bank, due to severe impairment of their capital.

The BoG then asked the Banks to raise their minimum paid-up capital to GH¢400 million by December 2018.
In August 2018, the BOG created the Consolidated Bank Gh(CBG) to take over five struggling banks in the country.
The five banks – Sovereign Bank, Royal Bank, The Beige Bank, Construction Bank and Unibank – were said to have run into liquidity challenges.

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By January, 2019, Heritage Bank was also collapsed and merged with CBG whiles the licence of Premium Bank Limited was withdrawn for breaching sections of the Banks and Specialised Deposit Taking Institutions Act merging it also with the CBG.

The GN Bank also opted to operate as a Savings and Loans Company in January.

Following the ‘cleanup’ of the sector by the Bank of Ghana, the nation’s financial space now has only 23 banks operating, down from the 34 that were operating in the country as of January 2017.

The bank of Ghana in a statement on January 4, 2019 following the expiration of the minimum capital requirement deadline said, 16 of the remaining banks have met the new minimum paid-up capital of GHC400 million whiles some other banks have been bailed out with $2billion.

“Sixteen (16) banks have met the new minimum paid-up capital requirement of GH¢400 million mainly through capitalisation of income surplus and a fresh capital injection.

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The Bank of Ghana has approved three (3) applications for mergers. Consequently, First Atlantic Merchant Bank Limited and Energy Commercial Bank have merged, Omni Bank and Bank Sahel Sahara have merged, and First National Bank and GHL Bank have merged. The three (3) resulting banks out of these mergers have all met the new minimum capital requirement.

Some private pension funds in Ghana have injected fresh equity capital in five (5) indigenous banks through a special purpose holding company named Ghana Amalgamated Trust Limited (GAT).

In addition to the state-owned banks (ADB, NIB) benefitting from the GAT scheme, the other beneficiary banks (the merged Omni/Bank Sahel Sahara, Universal Merchant Bank, and Prudential Bank) were selected by GAT on the basis of their solvent status and good corporate governance,” the statement said.

Dr. Ernest Addison, BOG Governor

Document Banking Sector Reforms
In a facebook post, the Imani Africa Vice president said “I hope my fellow academics are documenting what is happening in our Banking sector for teaching in our universities???
We should build our own case studies and make teaching more relevant locally.”

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Ghana’s curriculum challenges
Many have attributed the challenges of the country to the country’s curriculum in our education sector. Not only is our curriculum filled with so many theories than practical contents, the case studies used especially at the tertiary level are mostly foreign case studies making education some kind of alien to the challenges of the country.
To some, formal education instead of being ‘problem solver’ has been more of a ‘problem causer’ to the country.

These challenges according to some academics and educationists can be solved through overhauling of the education sector by instituting practical causes and coming up with local case studies that have relevance in the Ghanaian contest.

Kofi Bentil believes this is the right time to start this process.

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