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The Head of Finance at the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement System (GhIPSS), Mr. Bright Kyei Adomakoh, was honoured with the prestigious "Outstanding Contribution to Public Finance" award at the 2024 InstinctBusiness CFO Summit and Awards.

The award recognises Mr. Adomakoh's exceptional leadership and significant contributions to the realm of public finance. Serving as the Head of Finance at GhIPSS, Mr. Adomakoh has played a pivotal role in guiding the organisation towards enhanced efficiency and effectiveness in its financial management processes.

Mr. Adomakoh's recognition adds to the numerous awards that GhIPSS and its executives have garnered over the years for their impactful contributions to advancing the payment systems industry.

Expressing his gratitude for the honour, Mr. Adomakoh reaffirmed his commitment to driving positive change in public finance. "I am deeply appreciative to the Organisers for bestowing upon me this esteemed title, which underscores the collective dedication and hard work of the entire GhIPSS team."

Mr. Archie Hesse, Chief Executive of GhIPSS, lauded Mr. Adomakoh's achievements and the significant influence he has had in advancing public finance.
The award ceremony, held over the weekend in Lagos, Nigeria, showcased outstanding financial leaders and innovators from various sectors. The event aimed to celebrate excellence, exchange best practices, and explore innovative trends shaping the financial sector.

Centered around the theme "Innovation and Technology in Finance," the summit brought together top CFOs, finance heads, executives, analysts, and experts to engage in discussions that influence future policy decisions in finance within a conducive and relaxed environment.

Users of the GhanaPay mobile money service can now enjoy the benefits of a savings wallet, which offers attractive monthly interest rates. This development follows the successful implementation of the GhanaPay savings wallet, as disclosed by the officials of the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS).

Dubbed "MyGhanaPay Savings," this value-added feature on GhanaPay mobile money allows customers to transfer funds from their main wallet into a dedicated savings account within the GhanaPay mobile money platform. The primary aim of MyGhanaPay Savings is to empower users to save for emergencies and other future financial needs. The savings wallet is designed to prevent direct spending, requiring users to transfer funds back to their main GhanaPay account to access them, thereby reducing the temptation to deplete savings.

Customers can transfer funds to their savings wallet using either the GhanaPay mobile app or USSD service. The savings wallet offers monthly interest rates of up to 2.5% or more, depending on the user’s bank. This interest is separate from the quarterly interest paid to the main wallet, making it a superior option compared to other mobile money services in Ghana.

Samuel Darko, Head of the GhanaPay Mobile Money Unit at GhIPSS, stated in an interview that all GhanaPay mobile money bank partners offer the savings wallet functionality, ensuring that customers can benefit regardless of their bank affiliation. He explained that “while the main wallet earns only 1.5% interest quarterly, the savings wallet accrues interest monthly at rates of up to 2.5% or more, depending on the bank”.

Mr. Darko emphasized that introducing the savings wallet is aimed at simplifying the saving process for customers by segregating funds into a dedicated account, making it effective for them to achieve their financial goals.

GhanaPay mobile money service, offered by universal banks, rural banks, and savings and loans companies, combines mobile money features with banking services. Accessible via USSD (707) or the GhanaPay App, available on the Google Play Store and iOS App Store, the service brings banking convenience to mobile devices. The addition of the savings wallet enhances GhanaPay's contribution to deepening financial inclusion and boosting domestic savings in Ghana.

Mr. Archie Hesse, the Chief Executive of Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems Ltd (GhIPSS), was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding contribution to the digitalization of payments and financial inclusion at the Ghana Fintech Awards 2023 held over the weekend. The prestigious award, organised by the Ghana Fintech Association, aimed to recognize Mr. Hesse's pivotal role in modernizing payments in Ghana.

The Ghana Fintech Awards is an annual event dedicated to acknowledging the achievements of Financial Technology (FinTech) companies and banking institutions. It celebrates individuals and companies that have excelled in building competitive and sustainable ventures within the rapidly evolving financial landscape.
Mr. Hesse's journey with GhIPSS began 17 years ago when he joined as the General Manager overseeing Projects and Business Development. His leadership led to his subsequent promotion to the position of Chief Executive Officer upon the retirement of the first CEO.

Under Mr. Hesse's guidance, GhIPSS has spearheaded the introduction of numerous electronic payment products, many of which were pioneering initiatives in Africa. His groundbreaking contributions were therefore recognized with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the prestigious ceremony.

Mr. Hesse and GhIPSS have received numerous accolades both domestically and internationally. His wealth of expertise and experience has positioned him as a sought-after figure across Africa and beyond. In recent years, he has been actively advising several governments on enhancing electronic payment systems in their respective countries.

Reflecting on the award, Mr. Hesse attributed the successes achieved to the hard work and dedication of the GhIPSS team, along with effective collaboration from stakeholders. He emphasized the importance of continued support from stakeholders to facilitate Ghana's complete transition to an electronic payment ecosystem, where digital payments become the norm.

The Ghana Fintech Awards also recognized various FinTechs, financial institutions, and individuals for their noteworthy contributions to the industry.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS) Archie Hesse has once again been recognised with a prestigious award, this time as the Outstanding Digital Payment Technology CEO of the year. The Ghana Entrepreneurs Foundation bestowed this honour upon him, celebrating his exceptional leadership in guiding GhIPSS over nearly 12 years.

Under his stewardship, Mr. Hesse has spearheaded the remarkable evolution of GhIPSS, collaborating closely with both banks and non-bank financial institutions to introduce a range of electronic payment channels to the public. Among these innovations are Mobile Money Interoperability, GhQR, GhanaPay, and Direct Credit Near Real Time, among others.

Earlier this month, Mr. Hesse was also honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Ghana Fintech Awards 2023 for his outstanding contributions to digitalising payments and fostering financial inclusion. These recent accolades join a string of national and international awards he has received in recent years.
The Ghana Entrepreneurs & Corporate Executive Award, now in its 14th edition, aims to recognise and inspire the most successful and respected entrepreneurs and corporate executives in Ghana.

In response to the latest honour, Mr. Hesse remarked on Ghana's significant progress in reducing its unbanked population from around 70 percent to less than 30 percent in under two decades. He credited this achievement to the substantial modernisation efforts within the country's payment sector, highlighting the collaborative efforts of various institutions working with GhIPSS.

He also praised the leadership of the Bank of Ghana and its Governors for their trust in GhIPSS, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Central Bank, and for granting them the autonomy to innovate and excel.

However, Mr. Hesse emphasised that there is still more work to be done. He called upon all stakeholders to continue working closely with GhIPSS and other players in the payment ecosystem to solidify the gains made thus far.

Financial institutions have been urged to boldly showcase ACH Direct Credit Near Real Time (NRT) services on their digital platforms to facilitate easy access for customers. Highlighting and appropriately labelling the NRT option, will raise awareness among customers about this payment service, encouraging its utilization.
Typically, banks list various digital channels on their internet and mobile banking platforms, attracting significant patronage due to their visibility to customers. GhIPSS officials suggest that incorporating the ACH Direct Credit Near Real Time into the roster of payment channels will boost its usage.

Ghana is distinguished for offering ACH Direct Credit Near Real Time, a payment channel that positions it ahead of many countries. This service enables businesses to credit beneficiaries' bank accounts within fifteen (15) minutes of initiating fund transfers, setting it apart from the Standard Direct Credit (24 hours) and Express Direct Credit (4 hours) options.

Mary Dei Sarpong, Head of Bulk Payments & Customer Support, emphasized in an interview that, NRT empowers organisations and individuals to execute bulk payments round the clock, with recipients receiving funds within fifteen(15) minutes—an efficiency that can benefit numerous institutions. Mrs. Dei Sarpong encouraged banks to actively promote the NRT and attract as many institutions as possible to utilize the service for quick bulk payments.

Ghana's payment landscape offers diverse options to cater to varying needs, including instant payment, near real time options, and slower alternatives like third-party cheques, which can take up to two days to clear. Mrs. Dei Sarpong stressed the importance for banks to make these payment channels visible on their platforms and devise innovative methods to educate the public about their availability. While GhIPSS does not directly offer these services to the public, it remains committed to raising awareness to assist individuals in selecting the most suitable payment option at any given time.

NRT provides a faster way of paying many people than any physical cash payment can ever achieve. The time to manoeuvre through traffic, the risk of carry large sums of money to pay different people, and the fights over payment reconciliation challenges, are completely taken away, with the use of NRT.

The service also comes in handy for businessmen and individuals who have to make urgent payment to suppliers while busy with other activities.

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