THE “woke” boss of NatWest issued a grovelling apology tonight for “de-banking” Nigel Farage over his political views.
CEO Dame Alison Rose said sorry to the Brexit stalwart for “deeply inappropriate” comments after her staff branded him racist.
PA:Press AssociationNatWest’s CEO has issued a grovelling apology to Nigel Farage after his bank account was closed[/caption]
AlamyMr Farage had been internally labelled ‘xenophobic and racist’ by Coutts[/caption]
Ministers threw the book at the high end bank Coutts after they closed Mr Farage’s accounts – insisting firms must protect freedom of speech.
The humiliating Treasury intervention came after days of chaos for the semi-publicly owned counting house.
Mr Farage had been internally labelled “xenophobic and racist” by the luxuary bank – despite him holding an account with them for more than a decade.
The bank boss insisted that the internal memo “does not reflect the views of the bank” but she stopped short of reinstating the famous Eurosceptic to their clients.
But in a major climbdown, NatWest launched a review into how the damaging incident took place at the 331-year-old bank that is love by Royals.
The explosive sorry letter emerged minutes after the Treasury issued new rules where banks must ‘explain and delay’ any decision to close an account.
Customers will be given 90 days to challenge any decision through the financial watchdog or be allowed to find a replacement bank.
An explicit explanation will have to be given why an account is being terminated which will also help clients overturn any decisions.
The government said changes are being made due to new powers under new laws giving the UK control over its financial rulebook after Brexit.
Treasury Minister Andrew Griffith, said: “Freedom of speech is a cornerstone of our democracy, and it must be respected by all institutions.
“Banks occupy a privileged place in society, and it is right that we fairly balance the rights of banks to act in their commercial interest, with the right for everyone to express themselves freely.
“These changes will boost the rights of customers – providing real transparency, time to appeal and making it a much fairer playing field.”
Farage also said it was time for businesses who also found themselves cancelled by the banks to stage a fightback and obtain documents under transparency laws.
He said: “What worries me even more are the thousands of businesses, small businesses who’ve been closed down this year with no reason given to them whatsoever”.
Meanwhile, he also called on Dame Alison Rose, boss of parent company Natwest, to be hauled before MPs on the Commons’ Treasury select committee to be quizzed
In a savage attack, he said it was essential to know whether the bank was “acting as a bank or is it now more interested in social engineering”.
Speaking about the dossier, obtained through transparency laws, he said: “The vitriol, the bias, the prejudice. It reads like a report read by a postgraduate Corbynista that literally hates everybody with a Conservative view.
“I was shocked, I was literally shocked. This was a personal hit job.”