DEPUTY Speaker and Bagong Henerasyon Party List representative Bernadette Herrera is looking to initiate a series of probes to help create better legislation to protect the public from bank scams, electronic or otherwise.

“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,” Herrera noted. “Needless to say, this is by no means a witch-hunt, or a fault-finding endeavour. Every stakeholder will surely bring valuable, if not actionable, insights to the dialogue,” she added.

Herrera likewise mentioned that the alleged scam recently perpetrated by a now-dismissed RCBC branch manager will be a good test case to determine the exact parameters of institutional accountability. To this end, the lawmaker has invited top officials from the bank to provide their guidance on the matter.

The so-called RCBC Fund Scam involves a certain Lisa Arzaga, who was the branch manager of RCBC’s Garnet Road branch. She has allegedly defrauded millions of pesos from multiple RCBC clients, one of which is the Inang Nag-Aaruga sa Anak Foundation, a non-profit organisation that helps women, especially mothers, in need.

According to the filed complaint against Arzaga and RCBC’s executives, Arzaga executed her scam by up-selling RCBC clients into investing in various RCBC and Malayan Insurance products, but issued fake deposit receipts to the victims, effectively pocketing the money instead of depositing it into the bank or the investment fund.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has already issued two resolutions clearing RCBC’s executives of any liability, but the case has been escalated to the Court of Appeals.

“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,” Herrera pointed out. “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 concluded.

Related posts

Leave a Comment