Bank of Mozambique appoints a foreign exchange inspector at Standard Bank

THE BANK of Mozambique has appointed Zaitina Raul Chilaule as foreign exchange inspector at Standard Bank South Africa as part of a behind-the-scenes atonement for irregular foreign exchange activities that last week saw the bank in Mozambique fined R66 million, along with the fining and dismissal of two senior executives.

Standard Bank has also been suspended for a year from the Mozambican Interbank Foreign Exchange Market.

Chilaule’s appointment follows the appointment late last week by Standard Bank South Africa of an acting chief executive at its Mozambique operation following the stern censure by the Central Bank.

Banco de Mocambique announced the opening of three “misdemeanour proceedings” against that bank and two of its employees, namely Adimohanma Chukwuma Nwokocha and Carlos Madeira, who were banned from holding positions in credit institutions for six years and had to pay fines of R1.4 million and R3.2m, respectively.

Standard Bank would also have to pay the fine after the central bank finding “serious infringements” during inspections, with the emphasis on fraudulent manipulation of the exchange rate.

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As resident inspector Chilaule, who is a reported “senior staff” member of the Mozambican Central Bank, will “monitor the implementation of the shareholders’ action plan, monitor and analyse developments in the bank’s governance and internal control system, and participate in relevant meetings of the collegiate bodies.”

Standard Bank’s Kate Johns, who last week confirmed engagement with the Central Bank to resolve the matter, said yesterday that Standard Bank Moçambique (SBM) was finalising the appointments of an interim chief executive and a head of wholesale banking, which would be announced once the regulatory approval had been received.

On whether the hefty fine was being negotiated, Johns said SBM, which has a 127-year presence in Mozambique, was well capitalised and had sufficient capital to manage risks as they may arise in the market.

“Standard Bank Moçambique has publicly addressed a message to its clients and business partners that all operations in private banking, commercial banking, and investment banking, throughout its national banking network, consisting of 54 branches, remain operational,” she said.

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