Guaranty Trust Bank (Gambia) limited, Thursday 21st April 2016 officially inaugurated its head office extension building worth D72 Million and also commissioned the road leading to the building constructed for 3 Million Dalasi.
The Hon. Minister of Transportation, Works, Construction and Infrastructure of The Gambia Bala Gaba Jahumpa presided over the opening ceremony on behalf of the Vice President Dr. Aja Isatou Njie Saidy.
In his inaugural statement, Honorable Jahumpa said the D75 Million investment was a clear testimony of Guaranty Trust Bank’s commitment to “complementing government address the needs and aspiration of the people of The Gambia, particularly in the economic infrastructure and financial development.” He added that government was aware of the Bank’s corporate social responsibility support in areas of health, environment, education, sports and tourism development. The works minister appealed to other private organizations to emulate GTBank by constructing roads leading to their offices noting that this will allow government to concentrate resources on constructing major roads.
Mr. Bolaji Ayodele Managing Director of Guaranty Trust Bank said since the establishment of the bank 14 years ago they tasked themselves to become “a lead player and game changer in the industry by not only providing superior financial services in the country but also by taking a lead role in complementing government in its drive to develop The Gambia.” He added that this was possible due to “commendable guidance of the Board, the determination of our staff and the loyalty of our esteemed customers.”
Bolaji highlighted employment creation, payment of tax, infrastructural development, provision of world renowned services like Visa and MasterCard and their corporate social responsibility interventions such as the construction of the road as some of the Bank’s modest contributions to national development.
My Ayodele also outline some of the Bank’s achievements since their establishment in The Gambia among them being the first Bank to start issuance of local ATM Cards, introduction GTBank Visa Classic Debit Card, launching of the first ever electronic branch in The Gambia, enabling their ATMs for purchasing NaWEC Cash Power and mobile phone credit of any GSM network in The Gambia, being the first bank to install automated teller machine (ATM) in Basse URR, and the introduction of mobile banking which allows customers to perform transactions on their mobile phones.
He explained that “the board under the chairmanship of Dr. Amadou Samba approved a management proposal for the bank to construct the magnificent building at the tune of GMD 72 million.” This according to him was prompted by the need to accommodate their growing staff strength. Bolaji hoped that the building would encourage their staff to perform even better, add to the beautiful pipeline landscape, increase customer trust in the Bank and assure Gambians that GTBank is here to stay. He also hoped that the road will ease traffic on Kairaba Avenue.
Mr. Amadou Colley Governor of Central Bank of The Gambia expressed delight in the project and said this was possible due to stable financial policies and guidance. He noted that ‘’as the apex financial institution, one of our fundamental roles is the maintenance of a sound financial system.”
Governor Colley inform the gathering that following the enactment of the banking act of 2009 which further liberalized the conditions for payment of dividends and the repatriation of profits by foreign investors the regulatory environment has been responsive to modern challenges of competiveness, adding that the regulations also permit investments in shares of other financial institutions of not more than 10 percent of the Bank’s own capital. This he said has “allowed cross institutional ownership of each other in furtherance of the objective of our economy.”
Governor Colley thanked the Government of The Gambia for creating an enabling environment for foreign direct investment, this he said had benefitted the economy which he said was evidenced by GTBank expansion.
Colley said since its establishment on March 5th 2002, GTBank expanded and grew over time and had become one of the largest in the country in terms of asset base and above all created employment opportunities for Gambians and contributed tremendously in the country’s economic development.