With the collapsed of the Capital bank, loss of jobs and livelihood of thousands of people, giving the Otabil Family sleepless nights, an expensive building purportedly bought in America by the General Overseer of the International Central Gospel Church (ICGC), Pastor Mensa Otabil and his wife, Joy Otabil, has popped up adding to the family’s already traumatic situation.
The current market value of the 4-bedroom luxurious home located in the city of Virginia is US$825,500. The value of the land on which the property sits is priced at US$251,600, while the building itself is priced at US$573,900, bringing the total cost of the property to US$825,500.
The address of the property was given as 15315 Mountain Crest CT Haymarket, VA 20169- Mountain Crest Estates L-15. The names on the property were; Otabil Mensa and Joy Surv. The neighborhood of the home was given as 02088 Avondale. It was built in 2012 and has four bathrooms, a basement area among others.
Interestingly, one of Pastor Otabil’s daughters; Baaba Otabil, went to Liberty University in Lynchburg-Virginia and graduated in 2017.
It is not clear, if Baaba lived in the house linked to her parents, while schooling in the US.
Meanwhile, many people are questioning, why she did not attend Central University in Ghana founded by her father.
Reports on the house, comes as Parliament readies itself to do a secret probe into the collapse of the seven commercial banks, including Capital Bank, which Dr. Otabil, had been the Board Chairman and had majority shares.
The Parliamentary probe do be done behind closed doors, is coming on despite huge demand for public hearing by voters, who fear there could be a cover up of friends, family members, schoolmates, church and lodge fellows.
Mismanagement and abuse of depositors’ funds are part of the claims leveled against Capital Bank leading to its collapse, last year.
It is not clear when exactly the Otabil family bought the expensive house in the US, although this is not the first time that issues on the building, have surfaced in the media with all manner of claims being made against the clergyman.
It first came up about three to four years ago, with Pastor Otabil, maintaining a stony silence but with the collapse of the Capital Bank, and the abuse of funds making the rounds, suspicions will are rife about the source of its funding, and the Pastor, will will have to respond to his ownership or otherwise of the 4-bedroom store house.
The Otabil family currently lives in the plush Trassacco Valley Estate; a gated and highly secured housing facility for the wealthy and famous in East Legon -Accra.
Two years before the Capital Bank collapsed, a former Chief Executive Officer (CEO), John Kofi Mensah, had predicted its doom. In a memo dated August 11, 2014, the then CEO of First Capital Plus Bank, which later was rebranded and called Capital Bank, said they could not meet their obligations to their clients.
“I write to reiterate my earlier concerns and request for the Board to act with expedition and take drastic and urgent steps to resolve the seemingly intractable problems that have bedevilled and continue to dog the growth and our efforts to stand the bank on its feet till date.”
The memorandum was addressed to the Board of the Bank. It also mentioned a number of cases where funds have been mismanaged.
Read the full memo below
FROM: CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
TO: CHAIRMAN AND MEMBERS, BOARD OF DIRECTORS
DATE: AUGUST 11, 2014
URGENT ACTION TO SALVAGE THE REPUTATION AND FORTUNES OF FIRST CAPITAL PLUS BANK
I write to reiterate my earlier concerns and request for the Board to act with expedition and take drastic and urgent steps to resolve the seemingly intractable problems that have bedeviled and continue to dog the growth and our efforts to stand the bank on its feet till date.
We have discussed these Issues at length, but we do not seem to have made any significant progress as exemplified by the fact, among others, that a recent 3 man committee we set up to come up with some solutions appear to have been still born. We also appear to be perfecting the art of crafting long -winding resolutions which are not backed by any serious follow-up action.” I perceive that we are very conversant with and know very well the problems that confront, but lack the critical boldness and courage to tackle the bull by the horns. With respect, we all appear to be guilty of fiddling while Rome burns.
As the CEO, coupled with my interests as a shareholder of the Bank, I wish to set the ball rolling by shaking myself out of the self-imposed slumber that we all find ourselves. I think that I cannot do less than be in the forefront and spearhead the efforts to grow the Bank and move it to the next level to the path of joining the ranks of the foremost financial institutions in the country. The clarion call has assumed some urgency due in part to the attempt by the Government/Bank of Ghana to pass into law the Depositors Protection Bill and the Deposit Taking Institutions Bill which would, among others, oblige every Director of a Bank to report to the Bank of Ghana if he has reason to believe that a Bank of which he is a director cannot meet its future obligations on pain of criminal sanctions.
In short, transparency, candour and diligence in prosecuting a bank’s object of incorporation is no longer a matter of personal ethics, but have been raised to an obligatory statutory duty with sanctions to boot. We can therefore not have the luxury of going on with our duties as ‘business-as usual’. On the contrary, we are being compelled to move forward.
From my perspective, the issues that require urgent action appear to be:
1.0 Our inability to establish offshore counterparty relationships due to issues with shareholder’s credibility.
2.0 On top of this issue is our continuing inability to establish offshore counterparty relationships with other banks and financial institutions. As we are all undoubtedly aware, this problem has arisen and persists as a direct consequence of outstanding and unresolved issues hovering around shareholders of the bank. The Deutsche Bank and others have, after conducting due diligence on the bank, rejected our request for business relationship with them. We all know and agree that this type of business relationship constitute one of the essential life lines for the Bank. As long as this problem persists, we cannot reasonably expect to grow outside the boundaries of this country. This will undoubtedly lead to stunted growth and spell doom for the bank in the long run. Unfortunately as the issue is, I am sorry to state that we have dithered for far too long on this matter and require to act forthwith.
3.0 Unresolved TPF and capitalization issues.
3.1 This is a long standing issue and needs no further clarification.
4.0 Increasing interest expense and general costs of doing business
4.1 This has been the bane of the bank for some time now, that while management is embarking on a desperate and aggressive deposit mobilization to shore up liquidity to cover holes in the balance sheet, it is resulting in increased interest expense and general costs to us. This is detrimental to our profitability drive and the same is unsustainable.
5.0 Potential TPF and Related Costs
Decisions on some emerging liabilities which are potential TPF remain outstanding
6.0 For the above and other reasons, I hereby outline the following as urgent steps that the Board ought to ensure to save the Bank from any further casualties.
- On the first issue above, I see the solution as a simple one: The shareholders must accept to have their shares held in trust for them. The only other option, as far as I can see, is that they remain and we get stuck in the tunnel, with the inevitable consequence that this may explode in our faces sooner than later.
- Proper capitalization of the Bank since deposits with other Banks is not backed by actual liquidity.
iii. Acceptance of debt liability created through non-conventional practices and a delivery of a re-imbursement plan that will not create any further liquidity strain for the Bank.
- Full disclosure of any and all potential liability created by any shareholder to avoid further surprises as has been the case lately.
- Concrete steps to salvage the reputation of the Bank and prevent any further market and reputational risks.
- Decisions Board must be implemented without further delay.
7.0 I regret to mention that unless we act ourselves and so with all the promptitude that it deserves, things may go out of hand, including the possibility that the Bank of Ghana may step in, by which time it will be too late for us to make excuses, with all of us risking sanctions (though I fervently hope that we act with expedition and seriousness to avoid that possibility).
8.0Accordingly, I think that we are all sitting on a time bomb and cannot afford to spend too much time in drawing a road map based on the proposals outlined here. I would think that we should be able to accomplish this assignment within three weeks from now.
9.0 Of course, the Board’s acceptance or otherwise of my proposals would go a long way to assist my interpretation of the Board’s willingness to share in my vision for the Bank and its customers at large. I will certainly interpret that as a vote of no confidence in my ability to steer the bank to its destination with your respective backing and cooperation.
Submitted for the board’s action.