Monrovia – A revelation recently that the former Manager of the Guaranty Trust may have died from suicide attempt is triggering fears of masses loans and losses that are said to have put one of Liberia’s leading financial institutions in the red.
Guaranty Trust Bank is reportedly financially unstable and requiring the intervention of the Central Bank of Liberia due to loans and losses
Tunde Macaulay, Managing Director, Guaranty Trust Bank Liberia was recently forced to resign after it emerged that millions of dollars in loan payments from Orugun’s reign had been disbursed to several individuals and businesses, FrontPageAfrica has learned.
Businessman George Kailondo who was on the same boat with Orugun before his death, told a local radio station recently that the late Orogun committed suicide because he was facing some financial problems.
It has now been reported that the Bank is financially unstable and requiring the intervention of the Central Bank of Liberia.
When contacted, the GT Bank refused to comment on the matter, with one official of the Bank saying, they cannot comment on such financial issue because as a bank it is not their policy to disclose financial status to the media except the Central Bank of Liberia which is the regulatory body.
“How do you expect us to give you such information about the loan portfolio of our bank? Those are not information for public consumption because loan is an arrangement between the bank and its customers and we cannot disclose it” said the GT bank official who did want to be named.
Kailondo, a close friend to the late Orugun claimed that the deceased GT Bank manager was having numerous financial problems including bad loans and concealment of information for which some members of the Liberian media allegedly suppressed him to pay nearly US$20,000 to prevent the information from being published.
Commercial banks in Liberia are vulnerable to internal theft, bad loans and other operational problems as the CBL have to intervene in some instances to rescue some of these banks from collapsing.
Recently, First International Bank Liberia limited (FIB) was at the verge of collapse after suffering theft of over US$500,000 before a Ghanaian Bank, GN Bank took over the bank.
Since taking over, GN Bank is yet to make any significant difference in the banking sector of the country.
Orogun, a banker with over 20 years’ experience died in a boating incident off the Robertsfield Highway while on a ride with Kailondo.
He was credited with setting up GT Bank in Sierra Leone and prior to his death spoke of challenges in setting up the bank in the two countries in an interview conducted in 2014.
“The major challenge I faced in Sierra Leone and Liberia was the availability of human resources. The war in Sierra Leone ended in 2002 and in Liberia the war ended in 2005 so these were small countries with huge economic setbacks.”
Under Mr. Orogun, GT Bank emerged as one of the premiere banks, contributing significantly in raising the delivery standard of banking services. The bank established six branches, four in Monrovia, the capital city and two others in the counties in an effort to support more electronic products that would make banking services more convenient and accessible to customers in line with the niche that the GT Bank group has set for itself.
Guaranty Trust Bank (Liberia) Limited was registered on June 7, 2007 and granted a full operational license on March 6, 2009. Its business focus includes institutional investment, commercial and retail banking as well as financial advisory, small to medium and medium to long term capital financing.
The Bank is a subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, one of the foremost banks in Nigeria with a Triple A rating; the first indigenous owned sub-Saharan bank to be quoted on the London Stock Exchange and first new generation indigenous African bank to obtain a banking license to carry out fully fledged banking activities in the United Kingdom.
GT Bank Plc, Nigeria, currently owns 99.43% of the issued share capital of the Bank with some highly reputable Liberians holding 0.57%.
The Bank currently has eight (8) business locations in Liberia: Clara Town, Randall Street, Redlight, Sinkor, Waterside, RIA, Ganta, and Buchanan, and intends to extend its branch network to other parts of the country in line with its long-term investment strategy in the Liberian economy. This has been supported by the increase in paid up capital of the bank by its shareholders from US$10 Million to US$15 Million, which is well above the prescribe regulatory minimum of US$10 Million.
With six (6) years of operation in Liberia, the Bank has become a well-recognized and trusted brand that is associated with high quality customer service, professionalism, innovation and superior financial performance with a strategic vision for growth.
This is evidenced by its adjudication as “Most Outstanding Bank in Liberia” in 2011 and 2013, and “Best New Entrant Bank” in 2010 at the National Excellence Awards as well as “Best Bank of the year 2010” by the Global News Network (GNN) Liberia. The Bank was also the winner of the Liberia Bankers’ Association’s 2010, 2011 and 2012 Soccer Champion’s Cups, thriving on our understanding of the need to have a well-balanced lifestyle.