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Friday, December 7, 2012
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Padma Graft

ACC report next week

The enquiry team of the Anti-Corruption Commission will submit its report on the corruption allegations in the Padma bridge project next week after re-examining all documents, including those the World Bank had given the commission recently.

ACC Chairman Ghulam Rahman yesterday said the ACC will reinvestigate all corruption allegations in the project. “The enquiry team may submit its report to the commission next week," he said.

The enquiry team was supposed to submit its report to the commission during the WB external panel's stay in Dhaka between December 1 and 5. But the commission failed to finalise the report, as its meetings with the WB panel ended inconclusively.

The WB panel left Dhaka on Wednesday night seemingly unhappy over the omission of ex-minister Syed Abul Hossain as a top corruption suspect in the project.

Preferring anonymity, an ACC high official said the panel gave the ACC more information on the alleged corruption conspiracy involving several persons, including ex-communications minister Syed Abul Hossain.

"The enquiry team has already started re-investigating the allegations against Abul Hossain," said the official.

Sources in the ACC said the draft report that the enquiry team submitted to the ACC contained the name of the former communications minister but the commission later dropped his name.

The WB on November 13 sent the ACC a third report containing detailed evidence of corruption against public officials concerned as well as others.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister AMA Muhith told reporters in his secretariat office, "They [the WB panel] came and observed everything, but the decision will finally be taken by us."

The ACC launched the enquiry in September last year after the WB raised corruption allegations in the project.

The WB panel headed by Luis Moreno Ocampo, former chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, earlier visited Dhaka in October.

The two other panel members are Timothy Tong, former commissioner of the Independent Commission against Corruption of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, and Richard Alderman, former director of Britain's Serious Fraud Office.

ACC sources said that unless the anti-graft body files a First Information Report, it cannot proceed from its enquiry to an investigation as expected by the global lender.

The WB cancelled its $1.2 billion funding on June 29, saying it had proof of a "corruption conspiracy" involving Bangladeshi officials, executives of a Canadian firm and some individuals.

The global lender on September 21 decided to revive the loan after the Bangladesh government agreed to the WB's terms and conditions.

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It looks like the ACC, the AL government, and Muhith are going to continue playing the game of cat and mouse. They will never learn!

: Truth Teller

Even reporting anything about ACC is pure waste of time and resources. They themselves are probably so corrupt that they have lost all credibility.

: Salam

Comments

  • niloufar sarker
    Friday, December 7, 2012 01:03 AM GMT+06:00 (107 weeks ago)

    Everybody is under the impression that WB has agreed to revive the loan for BD met certain condition on removal of certain officials. We were also told that process of loan procurement & the ACC investigation will go on simultaneously. Now we find the WB is more interested in proving their allegation than building the Padma Bridge itself. They want to prove a point. WB could have built the bridge under their supervision if they really wanted, there is no denying that corruption is rampant & as old as the hills in Bangladesh & even under WB there is no guarantee that it will not happen under its watch.

  • Robin
    Friday, December 7, 2012 01:52 AM GMT+06:00 (107 weeks ago)

    ACC's report will end up in World Bank's recycle bin. Ghulam Rahman's songs and dances will remain another Padma Bridge icon besides the Abuls of Bangladesh. Message for ACC: You can play around with the Bangladeshis but not the World Bank.

  • Selma
    Friday, December 7, 2012 06:08 AM GMT+06:00 (107 weeks ago)

    I very much doubt that ACC is capable of doing its job since it is not independent otherwise why would it have cleared Abul and Suranjit in the recent past when even a village idiot knows that they have been caught red handed with their hands in the till!

  • salim
    Friday, December 7, 2012 08:52 AM GMT+06:00 (107 weeks ago)

    We will make our own decision. But the bottom line is, WB will make decision about the money. Let's keep that in mind.


 

 


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