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General News of Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Source: citi fm

Lawyer threatens Armed Forces and BoG over Military bank

Renowned lawyer, Moses Foh Amoaning is threatening to drag the Bank of Ghana (BoG) and the Ghana Armed Forces to the Supreme Court if the army granted full banking license.

The Director of Public Affairs of the Ghana Armed Forces, Col. Mbawine Atintande confirmed to Citi Business News that processes to grant the army a license to operate a universal bank have gone far.

There is an ongoing debate about whether the army has the backing of the constitution to venture into such commercial activity.

Lawyer Amoaning strongly disagrees with the Army on their intended move saying, “let’s look at Article 210 (3) that says that the Armed Forces shall be equipped and maintained to perform their role of defense of Ghana as well as any such function to the development of Ghana as the President may determine.”

According to him one of the reasons why the army wants to go into banking and other business ventures “is to raise money to assist themselves but that is a lack of a preposition because the constitution is very clear that the Armed Forces shall be equipped and maintained to perform their role of defense of Ghana.”

He maintained that it is the duty of the state to equip and maintain the Army and therefore, “the Armed Forces is not a business venture.”

Lawyer Amoaning threatened to head for the Supreme Court for an interpretation if the Bank of Ghana grants the army an operating license.

“The law on the Banking Industry is very clear; it has to be a corporate entity. The Ghana Armed Forces is a state institution and not a corporate entity; it is not incorporated and therefore will not qualify.”

He questioned the modalities the Armed Forces are using to set up the bank saying, “who are going to be the directors and the shareholders? The whole thing is such a marvel.”

Lawyer Amoaning expressed the hope that those who matter “will listen because I am going to carry the fight. If they don’t listen as I’ve indicated, I am going to write to the President because he is the Chief Executive of this country and the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces and if they don’t, I am prepared to go to the Supreme Court.”

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