Corporate governance needs serious attention – Dogbegah

Rockson Dogbegah, newly elected President of the Institute of Directors - Ghana (IoD-Ghana)

With the country’s corporate governance culture in turmoil, the newly elected president of the Institute of Directors – Ghana (IoD-Ghana), Rockson Dogbegah has stressed the need for government to take issues of corporate governance in both public and private sectors seriously.

Speaking at the annual general meeting of the IoD-Ghana, Dogbegah noted that good corporate governance helps in reducing or minimizing the incidence of corruption in all economies.

Corporate governance issues have arisen in many facets of the society: in the economy – banking and finance, judiciary, government, football administration and construction among others in the last half decade.

Citing the governor of Bank of Ghana, BoG, Dr Ernest Addison, he said the underlying cause for the crises in the microfinance and banking sectors are poor corporate governance.

“…although the failure of the two banks was due to significant capital deficiencies, the underlying reason was poor corporate governance practices within them. In this instance, we saw the dominant role of shareholders who exerted undue influence on management of the banks, leading to poor lending practices. This was also reinforced by weak risk management systems and poor oversight responsibility by the boards of directors.”

As good corporate governance is gradually becoming a scarce commodity among state-owned enterprises, departments and agencies, Dogbegah suggested that for Ghana to achieve value for money in its fight against corruption, there is a need for it to legislate that all institutions establish good and strict corporate governance structures which takes into consideration the various models anchored on effective monitoring and evaluation, rewards and a sanctioning regime.

“It might also be necessary for us as a country to consider the introduction of good corporate governance models and culture as a new paradigm in our curriculum development at both the secondary and tertiary levels in our schools.”

Outlining plans for his term of office; Dogbegah said IoD-Ghana would lead an advocacy to ensure the mandatory training of directors of both public and private sector institutions in corporate governance through the legislation of board membership in the country, as well as starting a process to incorporate governance studies in Ghanaian educational curricula at various levels of education.

He further stated that IoD-Ghana would establish a corporate governance index to measure the strength of corporate governance practices in the country and implement the institute’s award scheme to promote good corporate governance across corporations, among other major projects.

By Joshua W. Amlanu