By Alfred Kwesi Adams .
The Head Pastor of the International Central Gospel Church (ICGC), Dr Mensa Otabil, has broken his silence on his alleged involvement in the collapse of the Capital Bank, which he once served on as Board Chairman.
Speaking at the Tuesday evening church service, Pastor Otabil told his congregation that the truth would soon be made known and that he is not guilty, contrary to what is being portrayed. Pastor Otabil and his church, ICGC, and 13 others are the subject of a legal suit currently before an Accra High Court.
He told his congregation that the decision by the Receivers of the defunct Capital Bank to drag him, the church and others to court did not mean that he was guilty.
“When someone sues you, it is not evidence, neither is it judgment, it is just somebody’s opinion,” he told the large congregation.
He said, while he could not explain details of the matter to the congregation, he would allow due judicial processes to continue, expressing strong optimism that “the full truth will be known.”
“I know people have all kinds of questions and so on. First of all, I can’t explain anything to you. I can’t, because I’m in court. We will allow the process to continue, and hopefully the full truth will be known,” he said.
The suit brought against him by Vish Ashiagbor and Eric Nana Nipah of Pricewaterhouse Coopers, the Receivers, said within seven years, the directors of the defunct bank, including Otabil, approved loans and placement of funds to themselves and related parties “without the requisite collateral, and in clear breach of the company’s internal policies and relevant banking regulations and Ghanaian company law.”
Considering the issue currently before the law court, Pastor Mensa Otabil urged the congregants to closely follow the legal proceedings, indicating that it would be “interesting.”
“There is space for people’s opinion, but when you go to court, you are not just dealing with people’s opinion. You deal with facts, so it’s going to be interesting… there will be defense and other things, so follow closely how things will proceed.”
Capital Bank collapsed about a year ago, together with UT Bank, after the Bank of Ghana declared them insolvent.
A report, which emerged a year after Capital Bank collapsed, indicated that the then Board Chairman, Pastor Mensa Otabil, might have misused liquidity support given the bank by the Bank of Ghana (BoG).
The report cites an emergency Board and Executive Committee meeting on October 13, 2015, which noted with concern, the manner in which the GH¢610 million liquidity support to the struggling bank was used.
Instead of using the money the Central Bank gave Capital Bank as liquidity support for the bank’s business, the management, with the approval of the Board Chairman, diverted the money for other uses, leading to the eventual collapse of the bank in August 2017.