The Minister of Communication, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, has cautioned Ghanaians to pay heed to the warnings of the Bank of Ghana (BoG) against investing in cryptocurrency products not licensed by the regulator.
She said any individual who ignores such warnings should not expect the government running to their aid should they lose their investments.
“Let’s listen to the Bank of Ghana when they issue an alert. Bitcoin is not regulated by the Bank of Ghana and, so, when you invest, you do so at your own risk. Don’t call on government to bail you out when you lose,” she said on Thursday, 12 December 2018 at the Meet The Press series at the conference room of the Ministry of Information.
“What can we do using technology to protect us? Currently I’m sad to say, not much. We all have to be wise, let us use our commonsense. It is not everybody who promises enormous profit who is genuine, and even that should put you on your guard. It may take a longer time to get rich but your money will be secure. If you gamble, you stand the risk of making fantastic profit or you stand the risk of losing your investment. That is an individual choice and, so, we need to be wise,” Mrs Owusu-Ekuful added.
Just recently exactly 109, 259 Ghanaian investors were scammed by Global Coin Community Help (GCCH), a cryptocurrency investment syndicate.
The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) in November 2018 grilled the two directors of GCCH for allegedly swindling the investors of GHS135 million.
The two GCCH directors, Mr Kwaku Damete Kumi and Mr David Opatey, were released on bail.
The bitcoin or cryptocurrency platform serves as a medium of exchange created and stored electronically in the block chain, using encryption techniques to control the creation of monetary units and to verify the transfer of funds.
It has no physical form and exists only in the network. Its supply is not determined by the central bank and the network is completely decentralised.
The central bank, in early November, warned that it had not issued licences to the following companies to carry out deposit-taking activities.
They are: Global Coin Community Help International Limited (GCCH), Wealth Drive Ghana Limited (WDG), Devonshire Place Capital Ghana Limited, TCL Markets Ghana Limited, FX-Crypto Traders and Sonsis Susu Services Limited.
A statement signed by the Secretary to the BoG, Mrs Frances Van-Hein Sackey, warned: “Anyone who does business with these entities does so at his or her own risk and the Bank of Ghana will not be liable for the refund of any deposit lost by a depositor.”