BSP suspends, reprimands Metrobank brass over P1.75-B internal fraud
Bank regulators unveiled on Tuesday a slew of sanctions on Metropolitan Bank and Trust Co. over a massive internal fraud case uncovered in July of this year where a ranking officer allegedly stole P1.75 billion worth of corporate loans by surreptitiously diverting the funds into bank accounts under her control.
In a statement, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said the sanctions against the country’s second largest financial institution included reprimands and suspensions of directors and officials “who failed to perform adequate oversight and/or have been complacent or remiss of their duties and responsibilities.”
The Monetary Board also ordered the publicly listed bank controlled by the Ty family to allocate approximately P4.45 billion of its capital on a consolidated basis to cover for higher operational risk.
“The requirement is subject to periodic review and would be lifted when the bank is determined to have put in place adequate risk control measures to address the weaknesses noted,” BSP said.
The bank was also ordered to execute and submit a letter of commitment, to be implemented and completed within one year, to enhance corporate governance, credit administration, internal controls and audit, risk management, and customer on-boarding and monitoring processes.
“In determining the appropriateness of the sanctions, the Monetary Board took into consideration Metrobank’s strong financial condition and immediate corrective actions to contain further financial damage,” the central bank said.
“Together with medium to long term initiatives that will serve to improve governance, controls, and compliance, the Monetary Board reaffirms the safety and soundness of Metrobank,” it added. /kga
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