Dublin South West Sinn Féin TD Seán Crowe has said that the announcement of compensation details from Ulster Bank is daylight robbery, as it is too little, and far too late for many of their customers who suffered during its IT systems crisis between 19 June and the start of August.
Ulster Bank is offering a miserly €25 once off payment to customers who supposedly visited the bank more frequently between 19th June and 18 July than in the previous month.
Deputy Crowe said:
“Many people had been eagerly anticipating the details behind Ulster Bank’s much publicised and long overdue compensation details. Frankly, it is too little, too late. While it is welcome that these details have finally been released, I can see no reason why such a pathetic compensation scheme has taken so long to put in place.
“Senior management of Ulster Bank, back in July, assured angry customers over the airwaves, that compensation details would be ‘finalised over the next few days’. However many customers are rightly outraged that it has taken nearly two months for this scheme to be put in place.
“Ulster Bank’s Senior Management still has serious questions to answer and I expect that the Oireachtas Committee on Finance will want to engage with them again in the near future.
“At the time of the crisis, they were very quick to point out that it was a technical problem and up to the computer technicians to resolve; this compensation scheme, however, is their baby, and they must explain why it has taken so long and provides so little by the way of actual compensation for affected customers.
“This is not a compensation scheme by any stretch of the imagination, but simply a reimbursement scheme for people that have been charged as a result of the bank’s failure to carry out its primary function. It was daylight robbery with thousands being stripped of their benefits and basic rights as Ulster Bank customers.
“It wasn’t unusual for customers with healthy accounts to be told they had no money, standing orders were not paid, cheques bounced, queues were out the door in many branches and ATM machines didn't or wouldn't pay out. Many customers were also worried sick about how this would impact on their credit rating particularly those that had to deal with other Banking Institutions for mortgages and reliant on Ulster Bank transfers.
“The fact that compensation for out of pocket expenses has been capped for all personal and SME’s customers further reinforces the how deplorable this compensation scheme is.
“The scheme is an insult to Ulster Bank customers and another reason why the Chief Executive should resign.”