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General News Tue, 1 Feb 2000

Fraudulent withdrawals at ADB

An official of the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) on Monday revealed that some unidentified persons have succeeded in falsifying signatures of Bank for Housing and Construction (BHC) depositors and withdrawn huge sums from the ADB.

Speaking to BHC depositors who have thronged the ADB headquarters branch at the Cedi House to withdraw their moneys, Mr Owusu Ansah said, at least four signatures have so far been scanned and found to be at variance with those of the actual depositors.

He, therefore, announced a new strategy for ensuring that false withdrawals are prevented. "All those who have finished verifying the transfer of their account from BHC to ADB would have to wait for their signatures to be scanned on the computers at BHC before they could receive their moneys". Mr Owusu Ansah said the process could be delayed by the strike action initiated by the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union (ICU). He explained that the BHC workers, who are being assisted by personnel from Bank of Ghana and Price Waterhouse Coopers in the liquidation process, have joined in the strike action, adding, "they even prevented the liquidators from entering the offices this morning". Mr Owusu Ansah, however, assured the aggrieved depositors that the bank has sought the assistance of the military and some Indian experts "to enable us have access to the computers and finish the scanning this afternoon, so that we could pay you by tomorrow morning".

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He said ADB is in the process of moving those computers to its premises in order to facilitate the payment process. "Until then, we would have to be floating between the two banks to scan signatures before we can make any payments to prevent false withdrawals.

"We appreciate your plight and the fact that schools have re-opened and you need money to pay fees and buy books and provisions for your wards, but that is the best we can do for now".

Meanwhile, as at 1255 hours, representatives of the various banks were at a meeting at the ADB headquarters boardroom 402 to take a decision on whether to fully participate in the ICU strike. The GNA learnt later that junior staff of the bank has joined in the strike action while the senior staff attend to customers needs, especially the BHC depositors, whose accounts have been transferred to ADB.

Source: null
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