Finance Minister-designate Ken-Ofori Atta has rejected claims of conflict of interest following the involvement of Databank in the controversial Agyapa deal.
The nominee says he was not part of the decision making by Databank to be part of the Agyapa deal.
In November last year, the then Special Prosecutor, Mr Martin Amidu, came out with a corruption risk assessment on the deal concluding that the deal was not transparent and could give rise to corruption.
This was refuted by the then Finance Minister, Mr Ken Ofori Atta, who responded and said the Agyapa deal was done in the best interest of the country, with due process and was very “transparent from the onset”.
Reacting to a question before the vetting committee today, March 25, 2021, he said the company is an indigenous one who a hard-won reputation and we should be engaging in cynicism which would poison the environment.
”I don’t think there was any conflict of interest straight away because I was not part of the decision. I think the first-class nature of that institution speaks to itself,” he added.
He admonished the need for Ghanaian businesses to be encouraged to grow so we can do the Eurobond ourselves.
The company a few months ago withdrew their services from Agyapa.
According to the company, although it engaged in the Agyapa deal with a sense of patriotism, it decided to withdraw due to what it described as an attempt by some political actors to tarnish its reputation.
“We approached our mandate confidently as, arguably, the most experienced investment banking and brokerage firm in Ghana and we did so, particularly, with patriotic enthusiasm and pride as a Ghanaian company.
However, the Board of Directors of Databank has observed with deep concerns persistent attempts by political actors, during the political season leading up to the general election of December 2020, to tarnish our hard-won reputation painstakingly built over the last 30 years, by unfairly exploiting our participation and involvement in the Transaction as one of the Transaction advisors. We believe this is principally due to the Minister of Finance’s association with Databank as its co-founder,” the letter added.