President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Monday commended the Zenith Bank for achieving a greater penetration of financial service in Ghana, which has created opportunities for investment and growth in the country.
Thus, such institutions that have shown a record of deepening financial intermediation in the country and elsewhere, he said, should be given the needed support to stimulate wealth creation and bring prosperity to the people.
President Akufo-Addo made the commendation when he cut the tape to commission the new Ridge headquarters Complex of the Zenith Bank, off the Independence Avenue in Accra.
The bank, which offers a wide range of financial services, has had 12 years of operations in Ghana. It has some 35 branches and business outlets spread across the country.
The President said the Zenith Bank was truly “a pan-African Bank”, operating in several places on the continent, and in the ECOWAS region.
He said: “these are the institutions, with encouragement and support, are going to bring our continent together and bring us that integrated, united West Africa and Africa that, I believe, is the platform for the future prosperity of our people.”
Applauding the bank further, President Akufo-Addo stated that “what is going on here [at Zenith Bank] ticks of so many boxes that are important to me, and I thought I should come here and show my solidarity with what is going on here.”
The President noted that, in the example of Mr Jim Ovia, founder of Zenith Bank, “We have, first of all, the example of a dynamic entrepreneur, who has built this company, which has gone global. It is in South Africa, England, China, and several places in Africa.”
“The initiative and sense of risk-taking and entrepreneurship that Zenith Bank represents is what, I believe, will drive our country and our continent forward. We need many more Jim Ovias. The more the merrier.”
President Akufo-Addo praised the bank for participating and investing in Ghana’s educational sector, with its (Zenith Bank), committing two million dollars to support students at the Ashesi University as part of its cooperate social responsibility.
“Paying attention to such an important, other aspect of our development, that is the education of our young people. This scholarship to Ashesi University is a tremendous initiative, and I applaud him very much for it.”
The President assured the bank of Government’s support, and wished the institution well in its endeavours.
Mr Jim Ovia, founder and Group Chairman of Zenith Bank, said he had found Ghana to be one of the best countries to invest and do business on the African Continent.
He said the conducive business climate in the country had enabled the steady growth of the Zenith Bank in the sector.
Mr Ovia observed that Ghanaian students were a brilliant lot and that is the motivation behind the decision to invest heavily in university education in Ghana through Ashesi University.
He was optimistic that the Bank’s success would spur it to greater heights and achievements in the banking sector.