Breman Asikuma (C/R) – Ms. Francisca Dedei Attipoe Manager, Finance and Administration Department of ARB APEX Bank Limited has stressed the need for Rural Community Banks to be guided in the deployment of Technology for their banks.
This, she said had become the key driver of products, service and processes in the banking industry.
Ms Attipoe gave the call while delivering an address on behalf of Mr Kojo Mattah Managing Director of ARB APEX Bank Ltd at the 33rd Annual General Meeting of Brakwa Breman Rural Bank held at Breman Asikuma.
According to her, ICT Investment required huge capital outlays and could lead to massive losses in the medium to long term if not properly done and hackers might also capitalize on the loose ends to siphon funds from the system.
We therefore, wish to encourage Rural Community Banks to consult the ARB Apex Bank when taking some of these major decisions.
Ms Attipoe said the ARB Apex Bank still believed in the idea of all RCBs on a common ICT platform, and added that, there is an advantage in belonging to a larger pool, which gives all of us economies of scale.
She explained that if they all belonged to a bigger body, they could negotiate with vendors for volume discounts on every purchase, saying this could lead to cost saving for RCBs, which could be ploughed back into other value added products and services to help hence customer experiences at their branches.
The ARB Apex Bank would like to encourage RCBs to tighten their Internal Control processes, to prevent unscrupulous persons from exploiting the weak systems to the disadvantage of the banks, she stated
She lamented that, Key among the Internal Control breaches began at the origination of account opening for new customers, and ARB Apex Bank implored all RCBs to ensure that basic Key requirement, such as a verifiable physical addresses of their customers, passport-sized photographs and correct signatures were obtained before opening accounts.
She urged the banks to ensure that officers hired for Internal Audit duties should not also act as operations staff, saying it would ensure independence of the Internal Audit Staff to adhere to the Bank of Ghana regulations.
The ARB Apex Bank are the emerging Risk and Compliance issues in the RCBs and according to the Bank of Ghana directives, each RCB is expected to appoint Risk and Compliance Officer (s), who should be given clear job description, she indicated.
By appointing such an officer will give them the assurance that key risk issues would be effectively identified and the necessary control implemented to address them.
Source: Ghana News Agency