Parliament has dispatched a delegation to Brussels, the Belgian capital, to ascertain why the bank account of Ghana’s Embassy with the ING Bank of Belgium was shut down.
This is according to Hon. Frank Annor Dompreh, the Chairman of Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, Mr Frank Annor Dompreh.
In an interview with Accra based Joy FM, Mr. Annor Dompreh said the delegation is made up of MPs from both the Majority and Minority sides of the House.
“We have tasked MPs who have the capacity in terms of financial backgrounds who can help us unravel the mystery so we can have a report. The committee together with the ministry in our wisdom came together to put together a team on our part to go there who have the needed background to come out with a report,” he said.
The team is tasked to compile a report after the visit. The announcement leaves room for wonderment as to whether the Ghana Mission in Belgian does not have people who can simply ask the ING-Bank to explain the sudden closure of the Embassy’s account.
The ING Bank recently ordered the Ghana Embassy in Belgium to withdraw all of its money with the bank to pave way for the closure of the account. It is suspected that some possible money laundering activities may have happened in the Embassy’s account, triggering the red flags at the ING Bank.
The Embassy has up to comply with the directive by the Bank, however, ING has not given any reasons as to why it wants the Embassy to close its account with it except to say the directive to the bank is consistent with Article 59 of the bank’s General Regulations.
“Without prejudice to the provisions stipulated by specific agreements or regulations, in particular, the Special Regulations for Payment Transactions, for Transactions and services covered by these Regulations, both the Client and ING may – without being required to justify their decision – terminate all or part of the business relationship they have entered into, subject, where appropriate and at the request of the other party, to compensation for any loss, suffered as a result thereof, which the other party shall substantiate.
“The party which wishes to terminate its business relations shall notify the other party of its decision in writing…” the article states.
Many believe the decision by the bank is in connection with Ghana’s growing notoriety as a money-laundering conduit. Already, Ghana is on the EU’s blacklist for money laundering.