The National Savings Bank (NSB), in the spotlight last month over dubious stock market deal, is now strictly adhering to its core business following the directive issued by the Treasury Secretary, its acting Chairman Rohana Abeyratna said. He told the Business Times that public confidence in the bank has also been restored, adding that the full board of directors of the bank is yet to be appointed and without the approval of the board no major decisions can be taken.
The new directors are to be appointed next week, according to a senior Finance Ministry official, adding that the committee appointed by the Finance Ministry to probe NSB and TFC share deal completed their inquiry and the report will be handed over to the authorities soon.
He said that the committee found that the stock market transaction in purchasing a 13% stake in The Finance Company at a highly, unrealistic price without informing the Ministry was inconsistent with the NSB Act and financial regulations.
The committee has made several suggestions, including setting up good governance parameters and limiting the types of investment by banks, to prevent future occurrences, similar to NSB transaction. Mr Abeyratna said that he is handling the routine work at the bank and no changes have been made in daily operations.
Meanwhile NSB unions are exploring the possibility of taking legal action against those responsible for the flawed deal as it had eroded public confidence in the bank to a certain extent. One trade union official said, "What this deal points to is the almost total lack of transparency and accountability in carrying out their responsibilities to safeguard and administer conscientiously the assets of the nation."