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GCB To Lay-Off 900 Staff
   News: Banking News

The Union, Professional and Management staff of the Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB) is enraged by pieces of information filtering through from the Boardroom, indicating that the nation’s premier banking institution intends to shed off 900 workers, out of the 2,100 workforce. 

As usual, with the loud silence greeting the operations of the board and management in recent times, no one has mustered courage to inform the workforce about their looming fate.
 
Some workers The Chronicle spoke to claimed that the belief at the head office, and branches throughout the country, was that some top officials were engineering the mass retrenchment in order to pave the way for the recruitment of new workers through the back door.
 
A tense atmosphere has enveloped the High Street head office of the bank, as most people are not sure of their fate, with regards to the retrenchment exercise.
Other workers, speaking on condition of anonymity, told this paper that the management-worker relationship was currently strained, though there was no declaration of open hostility.
 
In its official documentation, drawing the attention of Dr. Kwabena Duffour, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, to a series of activities undermining the operations of the largest commercial bank in Ghana, the Professional and Management Staff and the local Union said instead of taking advantage of the payment of Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) debt to boost the operations of the bank, the Board of Directors and management had rather resolved to send home as many as 900 workers.
 
“The worry is that if this same bank survived at the time it was reeling under the TOR debt, then one wonders where this management ‘philosophy’ is coming from,” the Union, Professional and Management staff wondered in the joint communiqué dated July 5, 2011, and dispatched to the Finance Minister.
 
“It is our view that management should harness internal expertise on how to manage the funds to increase revenue, rather than cutting corners to make profit,” the workers stressed. The workers accused the management and the board of ungratefulness towards the government, which had come to the aid of the bank by paying the TOR debt.
 
“Instead of being grateful to the current government for redeeming the bank, management wants to paint a picture of a failed economy characterised with unemployment. This is hypocrisy of the highest order, and all attempts should be made to resist it,” the workers advised the Finance Minister.
 
“Management’s cry of falling interest rate is a complete non-starter, because the bank also takes deposits at much lower interest rate, which is the simple core banking philosophy of any intermediation institution. It is, therefore, a clear indication that the management has not got anything to offer staff who are the key drivers of the bank’s operational success,” the communiqué added.
 
On Tuesday, The Chronicle published the Board’s decision to sell some key assets of the company, and hire them back for their operations, in a desperate bid to make the bank’s books look like it had made huge profits.
 
Eight properties in prime areas earmarked for sale are the GCB Towers at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra, the Tema Main Branch Office building, the GCB Training School on a sprawling estate at Nungua, near Accra, the Bolgatanga Branch Main Office building, the Koforidua Office building, the bank’s Club House in Kumasi, and the Akosombo Office building. The Union and Professional and Management staff accused the board and management of running down the bank.
 
The current board and management have been in office for a little over two years, and within the period, their actions and inactions are clearly affecting the fortunes of the bank, and are likely to create agency problems to impact negatively on stakeholders and the livelihood and job security of GCB staff,” the workers stressed.
 
When The Chronicle approached GCB for official reactions, the remark was no comment!

 

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