Alauddin A Majid, the new chairman of BASIC Bank, has set two primary goals: restore trust in the beleaguered state lender and recover bad loans.
“I will focus on bringing back clients who have walked away from the bank. I hope they will come back under the new board,” the banker with 40 years of experience told The Daily Star on his first day in office.
Majid took charge a day after the government appointed him as BASIC Bank's chairman following the dismissal of the controversial board led by Sheikh Abdul Hye Bacchu.
Recovering loans which have turned bad will feature prominently during his time as the chairman of the bank, which was one of the best-run only five years ago, said Majid, also former chairman of Krishi Bank.
The new board aims to identify the irregularities and repair the damage to put the lender back on track, he said.
The 72-year-old said the board will initially take departmental action if any bank official is found guilty of wrongdoing, as tough steps cannot be taken overnight.
“Reorganising the bank and putting the right man in the right place from top to bottom will be one of my key targets.”
On his first day, the chairman met the top management and gave them an idea of what they could expect from him during his tenure.
“I will finalise the strategy after the whole board is appointed -- I will have to discuss with the rest of the members of the board.”
Meanwhile, the government yesterday appointed four directors to the bank.
They are: Prof Mojib Uddin Ahamed, chairperson of tourism and hospitality department of Dhaka University; Hasan Mahmood, a partner of MJ Abedin & Co, an accounting firm; Md Mamun Al-Rashid, joint secretary of the banking division; and Raihana Anisa Yusuf Ali, a former managing director of state-run House Building Finance Corporation.
BASIC Bank is not unknown to Majid as he led the bank as its managing director from 1996 to 2001.
A graduate from the American University of Beirut in Lebanon, Majid joined BASIC Bank in late 1993 as its general manager before his promotion as to the post of MD.
He did his master's from the same university and obtained a second master's in agricultural economics from the University of Sydney, BASIC Bank said in a statement.
Despite being a seasoned banker, Majid will face challenges in disciplining the lender, as the bank's indicators went on a free fall in the last four years due to the massive irregularities that cost it Tk 4,500 crore.