Former trustee at Cyprus Cooperative Bank says there was chaos, irregularities and wrongdoing at the credit unions
Another former trustee of the defunct Cyprus Cooperative Bank speaks out, describing a world of chaos at the financial institution where lack of expertise, political pressure, and wrongdoing ruled the day.
A former trustee at the CCB, Yiorgos Kittos, told independent investigators on Friday that credit unions were riddled with irregularities, such as overpricing real estate in order to provide loans.
Kittos, who had resigned from his position, cited cases where cemeteries and churches were listed as collaterals.
One case involved a 90-year-old woman who was given 40 years to pay off a loan, the former trustee told investigators.
“We didn’t find a bank when we got there, the Non-Performing Loans were at 45% and kept growing,” he said.
Kittos told the special tripartite investigative committee, which is probing the collapse of credit unions in Cyprus, they “tried to fix the chaos they had inherited” and further asserted that they managed to make the bank more competitive.
“All sorts of things were going on right there,” he said, adding that a decision to pay Finance Ministry official Dionysis Dionysiou €25,000 never crossed his desk.
Dionysiou had received compensation for taking part in meetings with the Trustee Board, according to Kittos, but the decision to pay him came from somewhere else.
“Maybe it was through an executive order by the Finance Minister,” Kittos said.
He also told the investigative committee he was not aware of a list of written-off loans, which he said had been approved by the Finance Minister.