Quinton van Rooyen, the chief executive of Trustco Group, has criticised the Bank of Namibia and its governor, Johannes !Gawaxab, in the wake of Trustco Bank’s suspension from operating as a banking institution.
On Friday, the Bank of Namibia temporarily suspended Trustco Bank’s operations, which is contingent upon Trustco Bank rectifying specific instances of non-compliance within six months from 18 August.
Van Rooyen’s criticism centres around what he perceives as !Gawaxab’s questionable competence and his track record of stewardship in various Namibian institutions, including EOS Capital, Air Namibia and the Social Security Commission.
“In a realm governed by integrity and accountability, such a record warrants thorough scrutiny,” Van Rooyen said in a statement on Sunday.
Van Rooyen has not held back in his criticism of !Gawaxab, accusing him of lacking the necessary expertise to lead the central bank effectively.
“It is noteworthy that Johannes !Gawaxab of Bank of Namibia carries a concerning reputation, evident in his D+ grade in the Global Finance Central Banker’s Report, the worst of any post-independence central bank governor,” Van Rooyen said.
Van Rooyen said while this suspension poses new obstacles, Trustco remains unwavering in its quest towards economic justice for all Namibians.
!Gawaxab said the suspension was driven by a series of instances of non-compliance and serious deficiencies within Trustco Bank, including unresolved internal control weaknesses.
He said even though the central bank intervened multiple times and urged Trustco Bank to resolve the problems, there are still worries about the bank’s internal controls and its non-compliance with directives from the central bank, which oversees the banking sector.
“Furthermore, the suspension aims to safeguard the interests of internal and external stakeholders, including depositors, shareholders, creditors and the broader financial sector,” !Gawaxab said.
Despite the suspension, Trustco Bank customers will retain access to their deposited funds, according to the central bank.