Would a forensic audit save ADB from further rot?

ADB1The Agriculture Development Bank (ADB) appears to be in deep rot than can be imagined, as the very fundamental flaws in management decisions over its headquarters sale and new offices rentals seem to show.

However, would a forensic audit redeem the bank, which is obviously sinking and losing market share?

Some of the reasons for a forensic audit are the following:

– Why does the Managing Director, Mr. Stephen Kpordzih still have 195 accumulated leave days and he is not proceeding on leave?

– The bank allegedly did not pay for the furnishing of its new head office, but there are records to show that it made a 70 percent advance payment totalling GH¢1.5 million on October 13, 2014 to a company known as BESPOKE Furniture.

-The bank is also alleged to have paid $37 per 7250m floor space including furniture and parking approximately $3.2 million per annum and that’s approximately GH¢1.1 million per month for its new head office facility at the Accra Financial Centre. However, documents available show that ADB paid over GH¢7.5m to another company known as Agridev as rent for the Accra Financial Centre space covering a period of six months.

It is also alleged that, rent has been paid in advance for the rental of some properties up to the year 2024.

Information available indicates that the Achimota branch for instance has a rented space which has not been used for about three years, yet rent is still being paid.

There are allegations that the Board Chairman of the bank had purchased the Managing Director’s official vehicle – a 2010 Mercedes Benz E Class saloon car which is now re-registered as LTA 1 – 15, and it is alleged that the unoccupied Ridge residence of the Managing Director has also been sold to the Board Chairman. The residence however, is said have subsequently been listed for public auction.

Allegations against some Board Members say they have recently been granted a revolving loan of GH¢400,000 with 24 months moratorium.

It is being alleged that when the bank gave its largest loan of over GH¢123 million to a company known as Clear Skies, due diligence was not done, as at the time of granting the facility, that company was in court with the then Merchant Bank for a loan default, and at the same time a KPMG report advised that the company would not be able to repay the loan in the next 20 years.

Meanwhile, it should be worthwhile to look into the allegation that the Bank’s current liquidity crunch with loan to deposit ratio is averaging 95 percent and that the bank is constantly borrowing from the interbank market.

Additionally, the Bank’s insolvency is alleged to be to the extent that it cannot lend to new prospective businesses.

If a forensic audit is what would redeem the ADD, then that’s what should be done.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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