Government has stated emphatically that it will not use taxpayers’ money to pay clients whose investments have been locked up with gold dealership firm Menzgold Ghana Limited.
The troubled firm has had difficulty paying its numerous customers both the principal and interests after it was asked by Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) to stop its gold vault market operations over regulatory infractions.
The Bank of Ghana had earlier issued caution statements to the public asking them to desist from continuing to do business with Menzgold as it was not licensed to take deposits.
The angry customers have resorted to staging demonstrations to pressurize government to intervene so they could get their monies paid back to them.
The government, in the statement signed by Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, said: “Menzgold was not licensed by BoG or SEC and its operations were not regulated by BoG or SEC. This warning was made as far back as April 2016, and, unfortunately, was disregarded by many customers of Menzgold. BoG and SEC are, therefore, not clothed with any legal mandate to refund monies to clients.
“In the case of banks and specialised deposit-taking institutions, as well as asset management companies licensed and regulated by BOG and SEC, owing to the fact that these companies were regulated by BoG and SEC, the regulators are clothed with the legal mandate to intervene in their matters, in accordance with law. DKM, for example, was licensed by the BoG, the reason for which it stepped in to help retrieve the monies of depositors. In the case of Menzgold, it operated as a trading company and falls outside the scope of the regulators’ intervention,” the statement read in parts.
It continued that “while the government sympathises with customers on the difficulties encountered in their transaction with the company, the State cannot and will not resort to the use of taxpayers’ monies to refund customers monies.
“The government wishes to inform the general public that the security agencies, having received reports from customers that they believe they have been defrauded by false pretences, shall employ all the powers of the State to find the accused persons, investigate the allegations, and ensure that the law takes its course in this matter.”