Wampah, Amissah-Arthur Bad Blood Stifled Economy - Akoto Osei

The Member of Parliament for Old Tafo, Dr Anthony Akoto Osei, has disclosed that bad blood between outgoing Bank of Ghana (BoG) governor, Dr Henry Kofi Wampah, and his former boss and now vice president, Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, is partly to blame for the current awful state of Ghana’s economy.

He said the failure of the duo – two of the most important figures tasked with providing direction and advice regarding the running of the economy – to bury their differences, was also a factor in Dr Wampah’s unimpressive tenure as governor, which, according to him, had forced him to resign his position as head of Ghana’s central bank.

Dr Akoto Osei made these disclosures to Nana Ama Agyarko on Accra News Tuesday March 29, 2016.

He said Dr Wampah was the Director of Research at BoG in 2001 when the Kufuor administration took over the reins of power. He said he worked so hard in his position until he was transferred to the West African Monetary Institute (WAMI) where he spent a considerable amount of time until after 2009, when the National Democratic Congress returned to power and made him Deputy Governor at BoG, while Mr Amissah-Arthur served as Governor.

“But it seemed he was not on good terms with the then governor Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur,” stated Dr Akoto Osei.

“And from my observation, since Mr Amissah-Arthur rose to become vice president, their relationship did not improve. If we are running a government and the so-called chairman of the Economic Management Team and the governor [of BoG] are not on good terms, then it will lead to problems. So, he’s had difficulties. And since news broke of this problem [the widespread microfinance scams mainly in the Brong Ahafo region], everyone has focused attention on him.

Several persons in the Brong Ahafo region and elsewhere lost their investments to sham microfinance institutions whose operations were stopped by the BoG after it found them to be operating without permission. There have been demonstrations by the affected persons for the BoG Governor to intervene and have their monies released to them. Pressure had also been mounted by minority MPs from the Brong Ahafo region on Dr Wampah to resign following the microfinance scandal.

“The poor working relationship [between Dr Wampah and Mr Amissah-Arthur] surely had an effect on the poor performance of the economy because it is a team that is working, not just one person. Everyone’s input is necessary, and whatever the BoG does affects the economy,” added Dr Akoto Osei.

Dr Wampah announced he would be resigning Thursday March 31, 2016, ahead of August 5, 2016, the date his tenure as Governor was to expire.

The decision, he said was to enable his successor enough time to settle into his position ahead of presidential and legislative elections on November 7, 2016.