Ghana’s central bank has been cited for spending a whopping €450,000 - an equivalent of Gh¢2 million - on gold watches for retiring staff.
According to the New Statesman report about 72 staff who have served the bank for over 30 years will receive these gold watches as part of their take home package.
The watches comprises 25 18 karat ladies gold watches and 48 kt gents ones.
But the Bank of Ghana in a rejoinder to the publication said the reason behind the procurement of the 72 pieces of watches, is to serve as an award to deserving members of staff who had served with the bank for 30 years or more and are due to retire compulsorily from the service of the bank in the years 2016 and 2017.
Below is the full state by the BoG explaining the procurement
RE: ‘BoG GOVERNOR BLOWS US$504,000 ON GOLD WATCHES’
Reports casting slur on the implementation of the end of service benefits of some deserving members of staff of the Bank have come with grave concerns.
The Bank of Ghana wishes to state, among others, that:
1. End of service benefits, as part of the conditions of service for staff, is a longstanding tradition of the Bank, an obligation the Bank has always fulfilled to boost staff morale and commitment to the goals and ideals of the institution. The award scheme has been the convention of the Bank since the 1970s.
2. In the year 2012, the Bank decided to procure the gold watches once every two years (i.e. 2012/13 etc.) in order to control cost and make savings on foreign exchange.
3. Deserving members of staff should have served a minimum of 30 years and are due for statutory retirement from the Bank.
4. The procurement process for the period 2016/2017 commenced in January 2016, before the appointment of the current Governor.
5. No procurement rules were breached in presenting sole sourcing justification to the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) for approval.
6. PPA is an independent public institution whose work cannot be influenced by the Bank or any other institution.
7. At all times, the Bank abides by good governance principles that ensure a robust and effective internal control systems and processes.
Issued by: Communications Department