A throwback video on Pastor Mensa Otabil has seen him talk about how simple-minded he considered the management of Capital Bank where he was the former board chairman.
In that video, Mensa Otabil revealed that he had been appointed a board chairman of a bank (which we now know is Capital Bank) although he had no educational background and training in the field of banking and finance.
In that 'haunting' video, Mensa Otabil boasted that he was able to sail through successfully since understanding the banking sector was quite a no-brainer once the manager could ‘add up the numbers, subtract, be detailed and be logical.
Below is the full transcript:
“I didn’t have banking training but I’m a chairman of a bank and I was intimidated the first time, I said wow, what am I going to do I’m just going to make a mess of myself… money is so easy to understand, just find out where it’s coming from and where it’s going; track it.
It’s just common sense. You look at facts, you query the facts, demand answers from the facts and you get the answers. It’s not that hard, and I was horrible and still horrible at Mathematics.
But I realize in finance you don’t need serious mathematics, just addition, subtraction, income, cost, expenditure, and net. It’s that tough really. Many times we allow things to intimidate us. You look at the financial statement… it doesn’t mean much, it’s addition and subtraction; that all follow the numbers, the numbers tell their own story, he concluded.
From the video, it is very clear that Mensa Otabil truly had less knowledge on how to manage the affairs of a bank.
Years after the collapse of some local banks, including Capital Bank, audit reports from the Bank of Ghana showed how the managers of the bank mismanaged funds at a tune of 610 cedis.
In a 9-point press statement, Mensa Otabil who was then the board chair of the bank, argued that his position as board chairman of Capital Bank was a "non-executive role."
Mensa Otabil stated that he was not "involved in the day-to-day management and operations of the Bank."
The pastor further clarified that it was not intended of him to watch the bank collapse. Mensa Otabil clarified that he was only helping a young man (the CEO) who had wanted to change the fortunes of other people through Capital Bank.
Touching on the thousands of workers severely affected by the collapse of the bank, Dr. Otabil revealed that they always remain in his prayers as a pastor.
"My position was a non-executive role. I was therefore not involved in the day-to-day management and operations of the Bank," parts of the statement read.
Seven local banks have all collapsed in the past few months and recent audit reports from the Bank of Ghana has shown that one of the major issue that collapsed these banks were poor decision making. The defunct bank which has attracted much controversy of late is Capital Bank which had Pastor Mensa Otabil as the board chairman.
Mensa Otabil's wrongdoing so far has been his inability to ensure due diligence in a loan he granted some key players in the collapse of Capital Bank.
Funds raised through the commercial paper issuance by MC Management Services Limited and Breitling Services were used as capitalization for the establishment of the Sovereign Bank Limited.
The Bank of Ghana in its report spotted some red flags including some GHc 27.5 million used for business promotion and handled by a board member; transfers to IFS amounting to GHc 23.9 million, transfers to Nordea Capital amounting to GHc 65 million, and transfers to All-time Capital amounting to GHc 130 million.
In all this, the General Overseer of the ICGC, Dr. Mensa Otabil assured management that he would ensure the funds were returned by March 2016. After these damning reports, there have been calls for heads to roll. In fact, the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) has mounted investigations into the matter.
Calls for Otabil's prosecution The question that remains unanswered is if Mensa Otabil could face the full rigors of the law should he be found guilty of financial malfeasance.
Amidst the expression of dissatisfaction over the telling reports from the Bank of Ghana is a general call for Mensa Otabil to be prosecuted.
Despite calls for his prosecution, Mensa Otabil seemed to have gained some popularity in social media from supporters and congregants of his church who have expressed their solidarity.
The "I stand with Mensa Otabil" tagline has literally swamped social media as supporters including popular journalists and media personalities.
WAtch video below courtesy Facebook:
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