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12.03.2009 Business & Finance

CAL Bank boardroom wrangling takes new twist…Another face-off in court today

By Daniel Nonor - Ghanaian Chronicle

Just when the dust seemed to have settled over the famous CAL Bank boardroom wrangling which sent waves through corporate Ghana sometime last year, some unsettled issues are set to send some more ripples in the financial sector.

The controversy began when some GH¢16million worth of shares were transferred by holder Mr. Daniel Ofori to Mr. Opong Bio, a few days to the run-up to the Bank's Extraordinary General Meeting which sought to kick out the Managing Director of the Bank.

The Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) upon the advice of the Bank of Ghana, however, took a decision to put on hold the transaction, with the explanation that there were queries to be answered before the transaction could take place.

The issue created so much uncertainty on the stock market, as the seller refused to take back his shares, insisting that the trading had locked end, thus demanded back his money.

Ecobank Ghana, the bank contracted by the buyer for a facility to buy the shares is said to have refused to pay the holder upon instructions from the bank of Ghana and the stock exchange

The buyer is, however, taking Ecobank to court for what he claims was the failure by the bank to pay him monies due him in that transaction. Mr. Ofori is asking ecobank to pay him the GH¢14m cedis due him because the central bank's directive came in too late to have affected his settlement.

Meanwhile, investment lawyer, Anane Antwi says if the sellers account was not credited with the money, the issue could take a dramatic turn. He further explained that even though the seller can be given a bankers draft to cash money, but once the money did not hit the account it would mean that the transfere was not complete.

Mr. Afare Donkor, the man at the centre of contention, when the bank was embroiled in the controversy prior to the Extraordinary General Meeting, was purported to have been the brain behind the buying of the shares to secured him 32,250,000 shares, translating into a 19.67% stake in the company, to consolidate his voting power in his bid to get some favourites onto the board, and to push for the removal of the Managing Director, Frank Adu Brako Jnr. from office.

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