The Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr Paul Acquah, has been awarded the 2007 African Central Bank Governor of the Year at the just-ended annual meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Annual Meetings Daily, a news magazine, which reports news at the meetings with African interest, conferred the award on him at a ceremony organised just before the curtains lowered on the meetings.
The award recognised Dr Acquah's leading role of stabilising the economy, pursuing reforms and re-denominating the country's currency, the Cedi.
“When in 2001 he took over as the Governor of Ghana's central bank, the economy faced a meltdown. He helped to engineer reforms that quickly brought Ghana's economy back from the precipice of imminent disaster and put it firmly on a path of five per cent annual growth rate,” a citation accompanying the award read.
The organisers of the award were also impressed about Dr Acquah's successful implementation of the re-denomination exercise.
“By far the most spectacular success recorded in the re-engineering drive to stabilise and strengthen the economy was the successful re-denomination of the Cedi, through a disciplined monetary policy leadership,” it said.
Dr Acquah, an economist with a considerable career development at the IMF, has been cited for raising the intellectual and managerial capacity of the central bank through a more competitive recruitment process.
A graduate of the University of Ghana and Yale University in Economics, Governor Acquah, obtained a Ph. D at the University of Pennsylvania, USA, and joined the IMF as a young economist.
He rose through the ranks to become the Deputy Director for Africa Department in 1998.
“It is in recognition of his astute leadership, enviable record of an economic turnaround, and overall success in the art and science of central banking that Dr Paul Acquah is today being recognised and honoured by the Annual Meetings Daily with the Award of the 2007 African Central Bank Governor of the Year,” the citation concluded.
The Editor in Chief of Annual Meetings Daily, Mr Ikechi Emenike, who presented the awards, said the awards were competitive and unsolicited as they were based on painstaking tracking of the developments relating to each category over 12 months.
For his part, Dr Acquah said he had had the fulfilment that policies introduced to strengthen the Ghanaian economy and currency had attracted international endorsement, saying “it will encourage the government to work harder to justify the mandate of the people.”
Other awards included the African Minister of the Year, which went to the Finance Minister of Ethiopia, Mr Ato Sufian Ahmed, and the 2007 African Commercial Bank of the Year, which went to Intercontinental Bank Plc of Nigeria.
From The Business Desk