Deputy Speaker Bernadette Herrera is seeking to create tougher laws to protect depositors from bank scams and demand more accountability from bank owners.
“With bank scams being a hot topic before 2021 ended, the extent and limits of a bank’s liability during scamming incidents must clearly be defined. This is by no means a witch-hunt, or a fault-finding endeavor. Every stakeholder will surely bring valuable, if not actionable, insights to the dialogue,” said the Bagong Henerasyon party-list Representative in a statement.
Herrer said the House probe would kick off with a deeper look into the fund scam case filed by Inang Nag-Aaruga sa Anak Foundation owned by her former colleague, former Pangasinan Rep. Gina De Venecia against Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. of the Yuchengco family.
She believes the RCBC case would be a “good test case” to determine the exact parameters of institutional accountability. She said officers of the bank, led by its president and CEO Eugene S. Acevedo would be invited to the hearing.
At the center of the RCBC case Liza Arzaga is the rogue manager of RCBC’s Garnet branch who has been fired by the bank for allegedly defrauding millions of pesos from multiple clients who invested in various RCBC and Malayan Insurance products from 2011 and 2018 but were issued fake deposit receipts.
De Venecia has raised her case to the Court of Appeals after the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) issued two resolutions clearing RCBC’s executives of any liability in the financial losses suffered by her foundation. RCBC said it was confident of winning the CA case.
“What makes this case a good starting point for a legislative inquiry is that the BSP’s decision, despite clearing the accused, actually acknowledged that a scam was perpetrated in RCBC’s offices, by a then-active branch manager,” said Herrera.
“There are technicalities involved when it comes to liability, of course, and it is these technicalities that we want to further understand in order to amend or create the necessary laws to better protect Filipino banking customers,” she added.