Lower Pra PLC posts positive results; holds 36th AGM


By Juliet Aguiar DUGBARTEY, Shama

The Lower Pra Rural Bank PLC has held it 36th Annual General Meeting (AGM) after a remarkable performance.

During the period under review, the bank’s total deposits increased from GH¢183.89m in 2022 to GH¢236.1m in 2023 – representing an increase of 28%.

Total assets as at December 31, 2023 amounted to GH¢255.9m as against GH¢201.9m in 2022, representing an increase of 26.75%.

According to Chairperson of the Bank, Madam Felicia Aba Dawood, the growth in Total Assets conforms with the bank’s sustainable growth rate policy.

She was speaking at the bank’s 36th AGM at Shama in the Western Region.

She said the total investment in near cash securities as at December 31, 2023 was GH¢110.3m as against GH¢67.6m in 2022, showing an increase of 93%.

She stated that the advances outstanding under the bank’s lending programme in 2023 totalled GH¢101,7m as against GH¢93,42 in 2022, representing an increase of 9%.

“We continue to note with grave concern the failure of some loan customers to service their loans fully or on schedule. The past due loan ratio figure is increasing due to failure of borrowers to service their loans on time,” she pointed out.

Madam Dawood said the bank is not relenting in its effort to recover all advances, and as a result some recalcitrant loan defaulters have been sent to court.

She assured shareholders that more drastic measures will be put in place to recover overdue loans.

On the bank’s Networth, she explained that demand for the bank’s shares has been on the increase due to its enhanced corporate image.

She noted that the high returns on shareholders’ funds have also contributed to high demand for the bank’s shares.

“I am therefore inviting existing shareholders to increase their shareholdings to maintain community ownership of the bank” she added.

Curtis Brentuo, Deputy Managing Director-ARB Apex Bank said: “Lower Pra has been of the best 10 banks out of the 147 Rural Banks in the country.

“Their operations are efficient; their profit margin is better and their CSR is top-notch. They need to blow their horn for the world to know what they are doing for the communities in their operational areas,” he said.

On the bank’s outgoing CEO, he said: “He’s been a priceless gem to Lower Pra and the Rural Banking community as a whole. We wish him the best and pray the one coming to succeed him will do better”.

The outgoing Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Lower Pra Rural Bank Plc, Issac Kwamina Afful, noted that indiscipline in the banking sector promotes financial fraud and can stifle the industry’s sustainability.

He therefore prescribed financial discipline as a safety-pin to promote stability, growth and social licence in the banking environment.

“Discipline has become the hallmark of Lower Pra. It is therefore not surprising that the bank has become one of the country’s best rural banks,” he stressed.

“I have dismissed more than fifteen staff for indiscipline and fraud related issues. I brought discipline to the Lower Pra Rural Bank Plc – so much so that staff with dubious characters could not survive. The bank has become an enviable place to work at, with a good corporate image in Western Region and the country at large,” he continued.

He advised management to maintain discipline that has characterised the bank to ensure sustenance and growth.

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