A microfinance company based in the Western Region, Boin Microfinance Limited, has cited the Bank of Ghana (BoG) for human rights abuse and shear disregard for law and order.
The company has dragged the BoG to an Accra Human Rights Court for allegedly superimposing records of another microfinance company on it and using such records as basis to declare Boin Microfinance as insolvent on May 31, 2019.
The company has also accused the BoG of not even notifying it before the insolvency decision was taken.
According to Boin Microfinance, even as the case continues in court with a certiorari order restraining the BoG and its agents from tampering with the company’s assets, the Receiver, Eric Nipah with support from BoG, has started taking over the assets of the company in clear breach of the court orders.
A petition copied to the media, signed by Joseph Apor Adjei and Dr. Seth Dankyi Boateng, Shareholder and Board Member of Boin Microfinance Limited respectively, cautioned both BoG and the Receiver to respect the orders of the court by staying away from the company’s assets until the determination of the case in court.
Boin Microfinance Limited had over two thousand clients and operates at Aiyinasi, Tikobo No.1, Esiama, Dadieso, Wassa Akropong, Boinso and Elubo.
Boin Microfinance Limited’s primary reserve as of May 31, 2019, stood at GH₵1.3 million (GH₵1,392,734) representing 9.0 per cent instead of 10 per cent and the Secondary Reserve stood at GH₵6.9 million (GH₵6,952,696.31) representing 45.7 per cent instead of 20 per cent.
Boin Microfinance Limited’s Stated Capital per the adequacy ratio stood at GH₵2 million (GH₵2,017,854.)
A notification from Boin Microfinance Limited which was copied to the Bank of Ghana, indicates that on Friday, May 31, 2019, the Bank of Ghana closed the offices of the company, when indeed Boin Microfinance Limited had advanced a total of GH₵200,000 loans to its clients who had applied for loans and had gone through proper assessment and approval.
Following the revocation of the company’s license, the Directors and Shareholders initiated a court action against Bank of Ghana and Eric Nipa, the Receiver on June 3, 2019.
But, BoG lawyers filed a motion on June 24, 2019 and moved it on July 8, 2019 that the matter must be struck out of court since Boin Microfinance Limited should have sought redress at Arbitration, based on the mandatory provisions of Act 930 under the rules of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Act, 2010 (Act 798).
Based on this, the High Court in Sekondi, under her Ladyship Sedina referred the matter for arbitration and the case was sent to Ghana Arbitration Centre.
The Directors and Shareholders of Boin Microfinance Limited filed their Notice of Claim at the Ghana Arbitration Centre and same was served on BoG and Eric Nipa the Receiver on August 1, 2019, to bring their response or defence within 14 days.
On August 23, 2019, a reminder, dated August 22, from the Ghana Arbitration Centre was again served on both BoG and the Receiver also to be responded to within 14 days.
On August, 28, 2019, Frank Davies of Messrs Davies and Davis filed appearance as legal counsel for BoG.
The petition cautioned BoG to stop all its agents from touching the assets of Boin Microfinance in respect of an order of certiorari and inter-locutory injunction order until the matter was determined by the court.
The petitioners threatened that any deliberate attempt by agents of the regulator to dissipate further the assets of Boin Microfinance would be resisted.
They accused BoG of not being interested in resolving the matter, but rather bent on seizing their assets without recourse to law.
According to them, the company had never had any discussion on insolvency with BoG and did not receive any notice on revocation of its license and take-over which would enable the Board direct Management to hand-over peacefully to the staff of BoG and its agent when they appeared at its various branches on May 31, 2019 to seize the company.
The company officials said they petitioned authorities while citing the report on an onsite inspection conducted by the regulator on December 18-20, 2018 and the report submitted to the regulator on June 4, 2019 which showed that Boin Microfinance was not insolvent.
In view of this, the company argued that BoG either mistakenly or deliberately, super-imposed another company’s report on Boin Microfinance just to illegally revoke its licence.
Consequently, the company said it submitted a supplementary petition in order for BoG to correct the anomaly and reverse their decision.
When the petitions did this, it did not yield any results, the shareholders and directors went to the High Court at Sekondi subsequently, to invoke the powers of the court to seek redress but the case was referred to arbitration.
Officials of Boin Microfinance said since BoG never submitted any response upon several reminders, they terminated the case at the Ghana Arbitration Center and went to the Human Rights Court, Accra, to seek for Judicial Review of the decision to revoke Boin Microfinance’s license without any reason.
The Court accordingly, served BoG with an order of certiorari and, subsequently, inter-locutory injunction order.
Despite these two orders, the company said the Receiver is taking over the assets of Boin Microfinance.
According to the company, the Receiver has already taken charge of Boin Microfinance accounts containing about GH¢8.4 million and real and active loans of about GH¢5.5 million.
Boin Microfinance said the Receiver has also possessed pick-ups, motor bikes, furniture, computers and other assets from its branches at Dadieso, Essiama, Aiyinase and Tikobo 1, through the use of the police.