Depositors want say in Banco Filipino case

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MANILA, Philippines—A group of Banco Filipino (BF) depositors and bank employees has asked the Court of Appeals to allow them to intervene in the case against the bank, particularly in the liquidation of the shuttered bank’s assets.

The group of 101 depositors and employees filed on Monday a motion to intervene in the case now pending in the CA’s Seventh Division, according to lawyer Patricia Lee Alexandra Bautista.

“We hope the court will give them the chance to participate in the court case,” Bautista told reporters shortly after filing the motion on behalf of depositors and bank employees who had over P500,000 in deposits with the bank.

Bautista said the depositors and employees also asked the CA to order the reopening of the bank. They also asked the court to compute the bank’s assets through its fair market value and not its book value as the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) had been insisting.

The BSP placed Banco Filipino under receivership on March 17, 2011, three days after the bank declared a bank holiday.

The BSP said the bank had to be closed because it was insolvent. The liabilities of Banco Filipino had exceeded its assets by P8.4 billion, the central bank said.

According to Bautista, the petitioners included not only individual depositors but 750 members of the bank’s two labor unions and four schools—the General Santos Foundation Inc. College, two Lasallites School in Isabela and the St. Martin Foundation.

The depositors come from across the country, particularly Cebu, General Santos City, Cagayan de Oro City and Laoag.

Grace Carrera of the Quezon City-based St. Martin Foundation said the foundation had to let go of 500 scholars because their money was tied up in the bank.

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