Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta holds more than the purported 11% share in Databank, a financial investment company he founded despite having left in the outfit in terms of management and day-to-day operations since 2014.
A recent purported breakdown of Databank’s shareholding indicates that the Minister was the individual with the biggest shareholding with 8,192,308 shares amounting to 11% shares. Keli Gadzekpo and one Opoku-Gyamfi Boateng are also listed as having 7 and 5% respectively.
But at the top of the list is Databank Financial Holdings Ltd. – a foreign company holding 74% shares, and which lawyer Martin Kpebu claims is based in Seychelles.
According to Kpebu, Ofori-Atta has some substantial share in that company and that means his total shareholding will exceed the 11% mark.
“If you look at the table (shareholder list), Ofori-Atta is saying he has just 11% in Databank, please that one too, tell it to the marines. Do you see that a certain company Databank, a foreign Company has 60 something percent of the shares in Databank?” he quizzed.
“Let’s go to Seychelles, they should bring out the beneficial owners of Databank, the foreign company that has the biggest share, so, let’s stop deceiving Ghanaians. So, KKD was right on point,” he stressed in an interview on Joy FM’s Newsfile program.
A recent critique of Ofori-Atta and Databank’s alleged ‘Eurobond gains’
Veteran broadcaster, Kwasi Kyei Darkwah, alias KKD, this week became the latest critic of Ken Ofori-Atta’s alleged conflict of interest position in the government’s Eurobond transactions.
According to him, the minister is benefiting at the expense of the country.
“I read a report yesterday that broke my heart, I saw how much Ghana owes but I also found that apparently, the minister of finance’s company or former company is a transaction advisor to the monies that we borrow. So as Ghana gets poorer, the minister of finance’s company or former company gets richer,” he stated when he appeared as a guest on GTV’s Breakfast Show program.
Describing the situation as unacceptable, KKD accused parliament of also failing to defend the interest of the country by allowing such a practice to fester.
“Is this how we want to continue in this country? Do we want to elect people into office, give them their pay and their perks and then allow them and their friends and their companies or their former companies to be the very beneficiaries of the woes of our country?
“This is not only about the finance minister of finance; this is about parliament. Parliament, you must be ashamed of yourself.
“You have failed the people of Ghana because I don’t think from the time of Nkrumah to date, whoever is the minister for finance should be benefiting every time our country goes to borrow money. Is that what happened?’’ he questioned.
The Ministry of Finance has issued a statement on the role Databank plays in the issuance of Ghana’s Eurobonds. It said the outfit was a Bond Market Specialist and not a transaction advisor as they had previously been labeled.
Kpebu has also accused the government of deliberately reconstituting the Eurobond bookrunners in 2017, which process he alleged was to kick out Togbe Afede’s Strategic African Securities, SAS.
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