According to the 2022 Auditor-General report, the Bank of Ghana paid Messrs Goldkey Properties Limited $35,909,067.50 for the development of a new corporate office in Tamale.
For the time period under consideration, the central bank paid additional payments to the contractors, according to a JoyNews story seen by GhanaWeb Business.
The report said the “total progress payments to contractors for the period under review were US$117,150,255.37 compared with US$32,246,487.75 for the corresponding period of 2021, representing an increase of US$84,903,767.62 or 263.3%.”
The Auditor-General’s report has highlighted that the increase in expenditure can be attributed to two significant projects: the construction of the Bank of Ghana corporate office in Tamale and the development of sports infrastructure for the hosting and organization of the 13th African Games in Accra.
According to the report, these projects accounted for 30.7% and 30.5%, respectively, of the total expenditure amounting to US$117,150,255.37.
In response, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) has clarified the necessity for a new corporate office building, stating that their current facility in Accra is no longer suitable for its intended purpose. A structural integrity assessment conducted by the central bank revealed that the existing head office, constructed in the early 1960s, lacks the structural capacity to withstand major earth tremors.
Despite these reasons, some individuals and groups, including the Minority caucus in parliament, have criticized the BoG’s decision to embark on this project. They argue that it is irresponsible for the central bank to pursue the construction of a new head office, especially considering the challenging economic landscape. The BoG’s financial reports indicate a total asset base of GH¢60.8 billion and a negative equity of GH¢55.1 billion, leading to concerns about the potential strain on the nation’s resources.
Critics emphasize that many Ghanaians are already facing economic hardships, and they call for immediate measures to alleviate this burden. However, the BoG remains steadfast in its decision, noting that the new headquarters is already 41% completed and is projected to be fully operational by September 2024.