People’s Own Savings Bank was yesterday fined $500 000 by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe for violating the Banking Act after its employees leaked pictures showing bond notes in the bank’s vaults on social media.
The bank’s employees who committed the offence were immediately dismissed from work.Section 76(2) of the Banking Act [Chapter 24:20] stipulates that except with the permission of the Reserve Bank, no banking institution or employee or agent of a banking institution shall disclose any information provided to it by the central bank in the performance of its functions.
In a statement yesterday, RBZ Governor Dr John Mangudya, said the offence was committed on Sunday, a day before the bond notes came into circulation.“More specifically, POSB unlawfully and without permission, took images of bond notes in its vaults and distributed and publicised the images via social media,” he said.“The wrongful and deplorable conduct of POSB was also in defiance of advice and warning against such abuse of bond notes made public by the Reserve Bank through a press statement issue on 26 November, 2016.
“The press statement was preceded by a meeting between the Governor and chief executives of banks held on 25 November, 2016 at which meeting it was emphasised that abuse of bond notes and any information relating thereto would not be tolerated.”
Dr Mangudya added: “POSB has thus abused and breached the confidentiality and secrecy it was enjoined to maintain in respect of information and material provided to it by the Reserve Bank in the performance of its functions.
“The serious offence committed by POSB has impacted negatively on the integrity and reputation of the Reserve Bank and caused unnecessary anxiety and discomfort in the market,” he said.
“The Reserve Bank advises the public that as a consequence of the said transgressions, it has imposed an administrative fine of $500 000 on POSB.
The employees of POSB who took, publicised and distributed the images on social media have been dismissed with immediate effect,” said the RBZ chief.