MANILA, Philippines – The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) on Monday, May 2, said they did not leak the bank documents being cited by Senator Antonio Trillanes IV regarding the alleged undeclared wealth of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.
"[We] are not the source of the documents and information being cited by a vice presidential candidate [Trillanes] regarding the alleged bank accounts of a certain presidential candidate [Duterte]," BSP Officer-in-Charge Vicente Aquino said in a statement.
Trillanes accused Duterte of not declaring in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth (SALN) the P227 million he supposedly kept in a Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) account.
The senator further claimed that Duterte has other bank accounts through which P2.4 billion worth of transactions were made. (READ: #PHVote: Banking on Duterte's bank accounts)
Aquino said the BSP and AMLC are not engaged in partisan politics.
"We assure the Filipino people that the BSP and the AMLC ... will never allow themselves to be used as a tool for political persecution or harassment, or as an instrument to hamper competition in trade and commerce," the BSP official added.
This was after the Davao City mayor questioned why AMLC and the BSP "allowed" Trillanes to look into bank accounts.
Under the Philippines' Bank Secrecy Law, no one may look into bank accounts unless they possess a court order.
BPI earlier denied allegations that it breached client confidentiality, saying it is not the source of the alleged bank documents. (READ: BPI speaks up on Duterte controversy)
The bank's statement came amid the call of some Duterte supporters for a bank run or closure of BPI accounts. (READ: 'We are not safe': Netizens threaten to close bank accounts for Duterte)
When Trillanes and the Duterte camp faced off at the BPI branch along Julia Vargas Avenue in Pasig City on Monday, the bank neither released records nor issued a certification that would show the presidential candidate's current account balance – even if Duterte issued a special power of attorney. (READ: BPI asks for 7 days to disclose Duterte bank details)
"Bank of the Philippine Islands will not make any comment as regards this morning's discussion involving prominent politicians at our Julia Vargas, Pasig City branch," the bank said in a statement.
"To do so would be against the basic banking principle of client confidentiality. BPI is committed to protecting client information and preserving the trust bestowed on us by our clients all these years." – Rappler.com