A member of the communication team of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Akomea, has lashed out at former President John Mahama over his failure to act quickly when the signs were clear on the wall that some banks were on the verge of collapse during his administration.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Mr Akomea said the former President took for granted the savings of the poor Ghanaian and failed to act, despite all the signs pointing at a gloomy situation.

According to him, although the Central Bank cautioned of a looming financial crisis, Mahama’s administration did nothing.

“Let me state emphatically that the banking sector crisis we witnessed in the country was caused by the NDC. It would be recalled that the 2016 Financial Stability Report of the Bank of Ghana, revealed that bad loans on the books of commercial banks in the country increased by 14.9% to GH¢4.52 billion in 2015 against the GH¢2.72 billion recorded in 2014.

“Also, the economic and financial data from the Central Bank showed that Non Performing Loans (NPLs) rose sharply from 11.2% in May 2015 to 19.3% in May 2016. The Central Bank under the erstwhile Mahama administration admitted in 2015 that the spate of non-performing loans on the books of banks was one of the major challenges faced by the banking sector.

“The Central Bank stated categorically that, the level of impaired loans in one of the largest commercial banks had quadrupled and the situation was becoming widespread in the banking sector. Due to the non-payment of these loans, the banks had declared GH¢2.4 billion of outstanding debt stock of loans as bad debt.

He then added that Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia also warned the Mahama-led government in September 2016, that eight banks risked collapse due to the increasing bad loans on their books.

“Typical of Mr Mahama and his NDC, they paid no heed to Dr Bawumia’s caution and watched the banking sector collapse. In fact, Mr Mahama in his State of the Nation’s Address (SONA) in 2016 admitted that the banking sector under his watch was collapsing due to poor supervision from the Bank of Ghana,” he stated.

This admission, he argued makes a mockery of the Flagbearer of the NDC’s recent allegations that the Akufo-Addo-led government is to blame for the banking sector crisis.

Mr Akomea then stressed that the NDC under Mahama lacks the moral right to come before Ghanaians to seek their mandate to return to power.

“Consistent with its 2016 campaign promise, the NPP-led government is on course to paying all customers of the defunct DKM and other microfinance institutions, in addition to those affected by the financial sector clean-up. Prior to the GH¢3.56 billion recently made available to the receiver to pay the depositors of these defunct institutions, government had begun full payment of customers of DKM and other microfinance companies that collapsed in 2015.

“This remains a monumental feat of the NPP and evidences the sensitivity of this government to the plight of Ghanaians. Cognizant of the hardships and liquidity crunch occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic, this could be described as a prudent approach to ease the already constrained economy, boost economic activity and expedite the return of the economy to normalcy,” Akomea noted.

The former MP and Minister stressed that the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) led by Mr Mahama cannot be trusted with its promises.

According to him, most of the promises Mr Mahama is making to Ghanaians concerning the banking sector has already been fulfilled by the Akufo-Addo government.

“The NDC over the years has proven to be gravely inconsistent especially under the leadership of Mr Mahama. One would expect that as an opposition, they would have drawn lessons from their incompetence in managing the economy and safeguarding the welfare of Ghanaians. Characteristic of the NDC, a myriad of empty promises has been made to hoodwink electorates.”