80% of DKM customer claims paid – Ofori-Atta

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, says government has settled almost all customer claims of the defunct Micro Finance Company, DKM.

The operating license of DKM was suspended by the Bank of Ghana in 2015 for flouting the rules governing microfinance procedures in the country.

DKM was alleged to have invested about  ¢77 million of its customers’ deposits in its subsidiary companies: DKM Airlines Company, DKM Fuel Station, DKM Transport, DKM Shea Butter Company and DKM Mining Company, among others.

Despite the lifting of the ban on the company’s operations, it was unable to pay its customers their locked up cash leading to its liquidation.

But government says great strides have been made in repaying the customers.

The Finance Minister told Parliament during the presentation of the 2019 budget that “government has taken steps to settle almost all claims of DKM customers.”

“The official liquidator received 99,858 claims and the validated claims amounted to ¢502 million. I would like to inform the country that out of the 99,858 claims, 79,708 (80 percent) have been settled and depositors have been paid,” Ofori Atta added.

Customer mass up at a branch to retrieve their claims in 2015

Mr Ofori-Atta disclosed that government has set aside funds at the BoG to pay the remaining 20 percent of depositors upon validation.

Also, an additional 12,612 claims, according to the Minister, have been fully provided for but the customers have yet to show proof of deposit.

“This means that 92 percent of DKM claims from depositors have been paid or provided for. Depositors for the remaining 7,568 claims of above ¢10,000 are yet to reach an agreement with the liquidators,” he revealed.

The Minister said government’s financial interventions through a clean-up following the collapse of some seven indigenous banks have been necessary to help mitigate the socio-economic impacts arising out of the closure of the failed financial institutions.

He noted that it was important that the costs of these interventions, borne by taxpayers, are recovered to the extent possible, through recoveries from debtors, shareholders, and related and connected parties, who, through unfair means, siphoned funds, from the defunct banks to the detriment of depositors, employees, other stakeholders, and the economy as a whole.

“The receivers for the resolved banks have already commenced civil actions against shareholders and directors to recover funds. The Attorney-General has also set up a special investigation team that is preparing dockets to prosecute those found criminally liable.”

“The Bank of Ghana has also set up an Office of Ethics and Internal Investigations to investigate all allegations of misconduct by staff, including any role in the collapse of defunct banks. The Government will not shield anyone found complicit in the failure of these banks,” he added.

Source: Joy Business

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