ACC was under WB pressure to file Padma graft case | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 14, 2016 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:10 AM, March 14, 2016

ACC was under WB pressure to file Padma graft case

Says outgoing chairman

The Anti-Corruption Commission filed the Padma bridge graft case in 2012 without any relevant document and evidence because of pressure from the World Bank, its outgoing Chairman M Bodiuzzaman yesterday said.

He made the comment at his farewell programme at the ACC office in the capital's Segunbagicha.

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In June 2012, the WB cancelled its $1.2 billion credit for the Padma bridge project, saying it had proof of a "corruption conspiracy" involving Bangladeshi officials, executives of a Canadian firm and some individuals.

On December 17 of the year, the ACC filed the graft conspiracy case with Banani Police Station against Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan, ex-Bridges Division secretary; Kazi Mohammad Ferdous, the then superintendent engineer of Bangladesh Bridge Authority, and Reaz Ahmed Zaber, the then executive engineer of the Roads and Highways Department.

The accused also include former local agent of SNC Lavalin Mohammad Mostofa and its ex-officials Mohammad Ismail, Ramesh Shah and Kevin Wales.

The WB had accused SNC Lavalin of conspiring to bribe ex-communications minister Syed Abul Hossain and several officials and individuals of Bangladesh to get the consultancy job of the project.

The ACC in its probe report submitted to the court in September 2014 cleared all the accused in the case of the conspiracy charges, saying none had been found guilty.

It also exonerated Abul Hossain and ex-state minister for foreign affairs Abul Hasan Chowdhury from the allegation of involvement in the corruption conspiracy.

ACC Chairman Bodiuzzaman, yesterday, also said the anti-graft body had filed the case so that the government could get the fund.

Later, the investigation proved that the allegations of corruption conspiracy were false, he added.

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