The Suma Rural Bank in the Jaman North Municipality has recorded a profit before tax of GH¢92,847 in 2020.
This is up from the GH¢487,442 loss recorded in 2019.
The development represented over 119 per cent growth in performance in 2020, occasioning a vigorous deposits mobilisation drive and other indicators despite the ravaging impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
As a result, the bank’s deposits grew by 22.54 per cent from GH¢18.4 million in 2019 to GH¢22.5 million in 2020.
The success story
The Board Chairman of the bank, Mr Kofi Wiredu Sasah, who announced this at the 35th annual general meeting (AGM) of the bank at Suma-Ahenkro, observed that the success was achieved due to a vigorous mobilisation drive embarked upon by both the board and management.
He said the bank’s loan advances also increased from GH¢6.6 million to GH¢7.2 million representing a growth of 10.21 per cent.
He explained that in spite of the effects of the pandemic, the bank managed to increase its investment portfolio from GH¢8 million to GH¢11.2 million while its total assets also jumped from GH¢22.4 million to GH¢25.7 million.
While the bank's net worth increased from GH¢1.7 million to GH¢1.8 million, it also recorded a modest profit before tax from a loss of GH¢487,442.
Addressing the meeting, the Bono East and Ahafo Administrator of the Association of Rural Banks-Ghana (ARB), Mrs Margaret Gyena Dzokoto, commended the bank for posting a profit after recording a loss in 2019.
She explained that almost all funds locked up with regulated institutions had been released to the Rural and Community Banks (RCBs), while attempts were being made to get the remaining locked up funds released.
Mrs Dzokoto advised member banks to be mindful of the investment options they undertook to avoid similar incidents in future.
Mrs Dzokoto said the banking sector was undergoing a lot of transformation and the RCBs occupied a unique position.
She said the industry was being regulated with three documents such as the New Companies’ Act, (Act 992 of 2019), the Banking and Specialised Deposit-Taking Institution Act (Act 930) of 2016, coupled with Bank of Ghana Directives to Rural Banks.
She, therefore, charged directors and management of RCBs to avail themselves of the provisions in those documents in order to be informed about new trends to avoid making mistakes.
"The RCBs have grown, and would continue to grow exponentially, and dynamics of the time call for new ways of doing things.”
In a speech read on his behalf, the acting Managing Director of Apex Bank, Mr Alex Kwasi Awuah, expressed the Apex Bank's readiness to support RCBs in ensuring the banks returned to normalcy in spite of the pandemic within the shortest possible time.
He advised stakeholders to support management of the banks to use the COVID-19 period to strategise to ensure the fortunes of the banks were improved.
"This is the time to get back to the drawing board and plan very well to ensure that Suma Rural Bank remains competitive and profitable", Mr Awuah stated.