First-ever Users’ Forum on the Companies Act held

Even with the promulgation of the new Companies Act, 2019(Act 992), there still abound confusion relative to understanding, interpretation, and application of the same.

Is allowance instantly strangers applauded

The Corporate Law Institute of Ntrakwah and Co has organized the first ever Users’Forum on the Companies Act 2019(Act 992).

The event, which was held at the Holiday Inn at Accra on Friday, November 11, 2022, drew participants from various Corporate Bodies, the Office of the Registrar of Companies, and several Business people and enthusiasts.

Speaking at the Opening Ceremony, the founder and Chairman of Ntrakwah and Co, and the Corporate Law Institute, Mr. Felix Ntrakwah noted that lawyers and business people alike had challenges with the old Companies Act, 1963 which led to numerous litigations.

He added that there was also a great difficulty among practitioners in appreciating the terms introduced by the Old Law which were in operation for barely 56 years i.e. the law introduced equity shares and abandoned ordinary shares however lawyers, ORC, and practitioners alike continued to use the latter until the law was repealed.

Why the Users’ Forum

Even with the promulgation of the new Companies Act, 2019(Act 992), there still abound confusion relative to understanding, interpretation, and application of the same.

This has thus prompted many persons intending to even take the Office of the Registrar of Companies to court over such issues.

“Why not create a day like this and more when we can get together, discuss and find a common ground instead of litigating?” Mr. Ntrakwah said.

There have also been about three pronouncements by the court on re-registration however most users do not know about them.

This and more thus informed the need for a different approach like a Users’ Forum to enable those who are not in the Office of the Registrar of Companies to understand the way they work.

On her part, the Registrar of Companies, Madam Jemima Oware was full of praise for the Corporate Law Institute for creating such a forum for her outfit to dialogue with clients and to reach a common ground for the ease of doing business for the good of the community.

She noted that the new Companies Act is very forward-looking and introduced more robust laws, corporate governance, and beneficial ownership and promotes the ease of doing business.

Moreover, Madam Oware said that the Act has various new sanctions and seeks to promote compliance to enhance corporate governance.

Speaking on the decoupling of her office from the Registrar General’s Department, she noted that the new Act has a provision to that effect and added that her new Office is an autonomous body and focused only on businesses to give efficiency to what they do.

Additionally, the Registrar of Companies indicated that after the establishment of her Office will be the setting up of an insolvency Services Unit to oversee the regulation of Insolvency practitioners; a compliance Unit, and a more empowered Company Inspectorate Division to enhance supervision and ensure stricter compliance by companies.

Head of Client Services at the ORC, Mrs. Matilda Osei also took the Users through the issues her office encounters in their engagements with clients.

She highlighted the various categories of clients they engage, their characters and behaviors, and appealed to them to understand the Office and its structures in their dealings.

Furthermore, she bemoaned the fact that most audited accounts of companies do not reflect the true status of the ORC’s database.

Therefore Mrs. Osei noted that henceforth, her outfit will be strict on users who come to the ORC, lacking the requirement concerning the Statement of Account per the Annual returns Form, and noted that they will be denied the service.

Also present at the event was the Chairman of the Governing Board of the ORC, Mr. Seth Asante.