‘Uncooperative AMA Bank staff delaying PDIC payments to depositors’
Employees of the shuttered AMA Rural Bank of Mandaluyong have refused to cooperate with bank regulators, thus delaying the payout of insured deposits to its clients, the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corp. said on Friday.
In a press briefing, officials of the state deposit insurer said they were now in physical possession of the bank’s premises but were being slowed down by intransigent staffers—who may be held accountable because of their actions.
PDIC took over AMA Bank last Nov. 8, a day after the Monetary Board ordered its closure for having insufficient assets to cover its liabilities.
“Since then, the bank employees refused to account for and turn over to PDIC the records under their individual accountabilities,” the insurer said. “Without these records, PDIC will be unable to immediately pay the claims of depositors for insured deposits.”
Based on reports submitted to PDIC as of June 30, 2019, the bank’s total deposits amounted to P1.4 billion involving 8,434 deposit accounts. For a closed bank of this size, PDIC pays the depositors up to 15 working days from date of takeover.
“On the takeover date, bank employees were enjoined to account for and turn over records and other accountabilities to PDIC, but refused,” the agency said, adding that it gave bank employees 24 hours from receipt of the written demand to report to the designated liquidation receiver.
“Until the bank employees comply, the payment schedule of insured deposits shall further be delayed,” the agency said. “PDIC cannot overemphasize the importance of the bank employees’ compliance as they are mandated by law.”
Under the PDIC Charter or Republic Act No. 3591, refusal to turn over or destroying or tampering bank records by any director, officer, employee or agent of a bank are criminal acts. These are punishable with imprisonment of not less than six years up to 12 years, or a fine of not more than P10 million, or both, at the discretion of the court.
“PDIC will not hesitate to use the full force of the law to safeguard the interest of the depositing public,” the agency’s said.
At the same time, it assured the public that all possible measures were being taken to expedite the turnover of bank records.
PDIC will hold a series of meetings with depositors and borrowers starting Nov. 21 to provide updates. The schedule and venue of these meetings will be announced through media, postings on its website and social media accounts, and our public assistance personnel who are stationed at the bank premises of the head office and branches.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.