According to Dr. Richard Atuahene, a banking consultant, Ghana’s Foreign Exchange Act does not impose any restrictions on individuals keeping a specific amount of cash outside the banking system. In response to reports of a supposed theft of one million dollars and 300,000 Euros from the residence of Sanitation Minister Cecilia Dapaah in Accra, he clarified that the existing law does not explicitly forbid such actions.
“Under the current Foreign Exchange Act 206 Act 713, there is no provision that explicitly prohibits individuals from holding that particular amount of money,” Dr. Atuahene stated.
Banking consultant Dr. Richard Atuahene has raised concerns about individuals holding large sums of cash outside the banking system, emphasizing its potential impact on the cedi and the economy. His remarks come in the wake of the reported theft of $1 million, €300,000, and millions of cedis from the residence of Sanitation Minister Cecilia Dapaah in Accra, resulting in the arrest of two house helps.
While the Foreign Exchange Act in Ghana does not explicitly prohibit keeping such amounts outside the banking system, Dr. Atuahene believes this practice can disrupt the calculation of the country’s monetary supply. He explained that when large sums of money remain unaccounted for in the official banking channels, it becomes challenging for the Bank of Ghana to accurately calculate crucial economic indicators like inflation.
Additionally, he expressed concerns about the potential implications on the value of the local currency. If substantial amounts of foreign currency are held outside the formal financial system, it could lead to a decrease in the cedi’s value. Dr. Atuahene highlighted that this scenario could have serious ramifications for the overall economy.
He stressed the need for careful consideration of the impact of such practices, pointing out that if multiple individuals were to hold significant amounts of foreign currency outside the banking system, it could further exacerbate currency depreciation. He urged authorities to investigate the source of these funds and address the situation to safeguard the stability of the Ghanaian economy.
Anti-corruption advocate Vitus Azeem is calling for a comprehensive investigation into Sanitation Minister Cecilia Dapaah by relevant state institutions. In a recent interview on Joy FM’s Middaynews, Mr. Azeem proposed three separate investigations to be conducted on the Minister.
The first inquiry he suggests is by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), tasked with determining the sources of the stolen funds. The GRA should investigate whether the money was acquired through business transactions, gifts, or asset disposal, ensuring that appropriate taxes were duly paid on these amounts.
In addition to the previous call for investigation, the anti-corruption crusader, Vitus Azeem, further emphasized that the Office of the Special Prosecutor should conduct a lifestyle audit on the Sanitation Minister, Cecilia Dapaah.
Furthermore, he urged the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) to investigate whether the Minister declared her assets when assuming her position as a Minister. Mr. Azeem emphasized the importance of thoroughly investigating the origins of the stolen funds and properties, aiming to uncover the rightful owners and ensure accountability.
Certain National Democratic Congress (NDC) MPs are calling for President Akufo-Addo to promptly dismiss the Minister following the alleged theft incident. The MPs representing Bole Bamboi and Kumbungu constituencies are the ones making this demand.