Famed businessman and former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the defunct UT Bank Prince Kofi Amoabeng has said that even though some Ghanaians have not forgiven him for using harsh tactics to get them to pay back money they owed him, he would adopt even harsher tactics to get his money back if he started UT Bank again.
Speaking at the second edition of the Ignite Public Forum at the University of Cape last Wednesday, Prince Kofi Amoabeng bemoaned the negative thinking of some Ghanaians who would rather blame a creditor for insisting that his debts be paid rather than blame the debtor who is refusing to pay back.
He could not fathom why he would get out of his way to assist people financially only for them to default in repaying their debts without any explanation so that he would have to shoulder the financial burden of paying someone else’s debt.
“We did not even know how to lend and collect the money back. We had not done it before, except that I believed that I could do it. And I was going to use my soldier tactics – whatever – to collect my money if you didn’t pay me; because I won’t let you take that money which belongs to other people and I have to pay them. And it is one thing Ghanaians, some Ghanaians, haven’t forgiven me for the harsh way I went at them to get my money back.
But I will never ever understand that you come to me with your problem; I take my time to listen and we structure of helping you; we agree that it will suit your purpose and we sign the contract; then you default. Business is business. At least I expect you to come and tell me that “it didn’t go”. You don’t come. I call you. You don’t pick up. I come to your house; you’re not there.
And Ghanaians expect that I will sit down and allow you to chop people’s money and I will carry the headache? It’s never going to happen.
If I had to start it today, it problem will be worse because we are negative-thinking people. The person who sets out to help you, when they default, Ghanaians are on their side. “That man, a small amount he has taken…a small amount? Bring my money back to me,” he stated.
In the late 90s, UT Bank was known as UT Financial Services, a non-bank financial services provider (NBFI). It became UT Bank in 2010 and had its licence revoked by the Central Bank in 2017, essentially collapsing it.
During its lifespan, Prince Kofi Amoabeng was both loved and reviled for adopting uncompromising strategies to ensure that those who owed the business paid back their debts in full.