Grameen Bank panel report on Jul 20

The government commission formed to review the activities of the Grameen Bank will submit its full report on July 20, Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith has said.


He told reporters about the developments on Thursday after a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Public Procurement.

The commission headed by former Secretary Mohammad Mamunur Rashid has already made some recommendations and revealed an interim report.

Recently, the commission in its report recommended creating several independently registered organisations under Grameen Bank in order to decentralise drastically the bank’s operations and management.

Former Managing Director of Grameen Bank Muhammad Yunus claimed the plan was conceived to take full control of the bank after splitting it to pieces by dissolving its Board of Directors.

However, the Finance Minister responded to this in Parliament on June 26 saying the government had no plans to change the characteristic of the bank and it will function as it is.

The minister had also heavily criticised Nobel laureate Yunus which the Yunus Centre protested on July 2.

When asked whether he will be responding to Yunus Centre’s statement, Muhith said, “It will be answered in due time.”

Grameen Bank was founded in 1983 through a martial law ordinance. Yunus and Grameen Bank shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 for anti-poverty microcredit business.

After the National Norwegian Television in December, 2010, aired an investigative TV documentary “Fanget i Mikrogjeld” or “Caught in Micro debt”, allegations were there that Yunus drew off nearly Tk 7 billion (100 million dollars) in aid for poor borrowers of Grameen Bank to another of his company back in 1996. This sparked a widespread discussion both at home and abroad.

In the wake of such allegations, the government formed a commission last year to review the activities of Grameen Bank and 48 other organisations that bear the Grameen name, and make recommendations on how to run the organisations.

A workshop was supposed to take place on July 2 at the capital’s BIAM Auditorium to discuss these issues but was cancelled.

Bangladesh Bank on March 2, 2011 fired Yunus for continuing in office beyond the retirement age for public servants.. Yunus had moved the top court against the central bank decision but lost.

Source: bdnews24