Story from Isaac Akwetey-Okunor
When it appears the hope of customers, clients and major stakeholders of then Asuopra Rural Bank have been dashed out following the closure of the bank about some three-half years ago, it has bounced back with new innovations and creativity.
At the re-launching and re-branding of the bank at a colourful ceremony, which was herald by a rich cultural display at New Abirem last Friday, the District Chief Executive (DCE) for the Birim North Assembly, Mavis Ama Frimpong, urged the management of North Birim Rural Bank to support the development of the district through its corporate social responsibility.
According to the DCE, the development of the district would be far from achieved if individuals and corporate bodies relegate their individual, as well as corporate, responsibilities to the background.
Speaking at the programme, the Birim North DCE reiterated that the district would be the place to live when conscious efforts were made to bring development, since the government alone cannot provide the all the needs of its citizens.
She, however, expressed her joy over the re-launching and branding which has suffered some challenging periods in the past, and asked the new management to put in place measures that would make the bank live the test of time.
Mavis Frimpong further appealed to business people in the area, particularly market women, to make the bank their preferred choice in the district.
The Chairman of the Board of the bank, Mr. Alex Asiedu, assured residents of the district, particularly its cherished customers who have had faith in the bank and have decided to do business with the bank, of mouthwatering innovative banking.
Unlike the few challenges the bank recorded in its early operations, the Board Chairman hinted that, the bank had come to stay for good, and that it would be pathetic that customers who stayed with the bank during its challenging times would lose a great deal of service if they decided to join other banks.
Thus, he called on all to still have faith in the bank and continue to do business with it, since the new management was bringing on board new innovations that would ensure the sustainability of the bank.
Even though he claimed the past serves as the preparation grounds for the future, he appealed to customers who have suffered one way or the other during the difficult times of the bank, to forget about the past and look into the future.
Giving a brief history of the bank, a member of the Board and Senior Lecturer at the University of Cape Coast, Dr. Edward Ntifo-Siaw, said the bank was established some 36 years ago as Asuopra Rural Bank to support its clients and their local businesses.
According to him, the Asuopra Rural Bank was incorporated under the Company Code 1963 Act179, and commenced its banking business under the banking Act 1979 on April 24, 1977.
The bank, which was the first rural bank in the Eastern Region and third in Ghana at that time, was founded by three prominent persons of the area, with its headquarters at Akyem Afosu, and branches at New Abirem and Nkwateng.
The three are Opanin Kwadwo Kesse, who provided his building to be used as the banking premises, with Nana Kwadwo Amoh II and Opanin Kwadwo Asomaning raising the initial capital of ¢3,500 as the minimum capital at the time.
The bank which has gone through some difficult times in the last three and half years is now known as North Birim Rural Bank through the effort of the board chairman, Bank of Ghana and Apex Bank.