Union petitions RBZ, Parly over bank failures

Union petitions RBZ, Parly over bank failures

By Bernard Mpofu, HARARE, March 11 (The Source) – The Zimbabwe Banks and Allied Workers Union (Zibawu) has petitioned the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and Parliament to carry out an investigation into bank failures, alleging that some central bank officials were colluding with bank executives to whitewash delinquency in weak institutions.

Zibawu president Farai Katsande and secretary general Phillip Mutasa said the high failure rate of predominantly indigenous banks is weakening confidence in the financial services sector.

“Zibawu is disturbed that despite the continued bank failures and such high level observations and concerns, nothing seems to be done to stop the scourge,” Zibawu said in a statement on Wednesday.

“We demand that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe immediately investigate allegations of improper relationships between senior RBZ officials and failed banks. If allegations that senior RBZ officials are amongst the list of clients not servicing their loans in the failed banks are correct, then this must be corrected and stopped.”

The union urged the central bank to step up its monitoring and surveillance efforts to stop further bank failures and make public all reports on failed institutions.

Zibawu also said lawmakers should amend the laws governing the country’s financial services sector.

“We (want) members of Parliament to enquire into the causes of bank failures in Zimbabwe, publicize the findings and prescribe measures of bring to book those responsible, including tracing and recovering the depositors’ funds,” the union said.

A number of banks, including AfrAsia, Allied, Trust, Royal and Genesis have gone under since the introduction of the multi currency regime in 2009 due to poor corporate governance issues and lack of capital.