'These criminals will be brought to justice for the welfare of the people'
In the last year, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) filed 11 money laundering cases, and the perpetrators were convicted in all of them, says ACC chief.
ACC Chairman Iqbal Mahmood disclosed the information on Friday in a meeting held on the implementation report of the one-year strategic action plan of 2019, reports Bangla Tribune.
In this virtual meeting of the full commission, the ACC chief expressed satisfaction over the progress of the money laundering division’s activities.
He said the perpetrators have been convicted in all 11 of the commission’s money laundering cases in 2019, and the perpetrators were convicted in 100% of the cases in 2018 as well.
He further said that in order to stop money laundering, it is of utmost importance to file a case against the money launderers as soon as possible and recover their illegally amassed assets.
There should be close coordination between Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU), Criminal Investigation Department (CID), National Board of Revenue (NBR), and other concerned agencies, he added.
The effective coordination among these agencies has to be implemented in accordance with the commission’s strategy, the ACC chairman said.
“Although the commission's regular operations have been halted due to the coronavirus pandemic, legal action against the corrupt people in the relief and health sectors will be intensified.
“These criminals will be brought to justice for the welfare of the people,” said ACC chief Iqbal.
Addressing the ACC officials, Iqbal said: “More than 18 ACC officials have contracted the coronavirus, while two promising officers died.
“Despite this, you [ACC officials] are filing cases, arresting criminals, summoning those involved in the allegations, and interrogating them. In other words, all kinds of official activities including investigation, prosecution, and prevention of corruption allegations are ongoing. This is your achievement.”
“Everyone must follow the hygiene rules. If necessary, conduct investigation activities from home. In this case, the movement of documents must be registered and the secretary of the commission must be informed,” Iqbal told his officers.
ACC Commissioner Md Mozammel Haque Khan said in the meeting, focal point officers could play the most important role in implementing the National Integrity Strategy.
“But unfortunately, the truth is that these officials [focal point officers] did not inform the commission about any corruption in their respective ministries or departments. They also need to be held accountable,” Mozammel added.
Emphasizing the need to appoint honest, transparent, and strong-willed focal point officers, he said the activities of all the integrity associations of the commission should be made visible; just forming committees will not work.
ACC Commissioner AFM Aminul Islam said the ACC's intelligence surveillance on service providers like the hospitals should be further enhanced.
“We often get complaints that some of these organizations are not providing the required level of government services.
“If needed, campaigns will be started the same way as it was conducted before the coronavirus pandemic started, in compliance with the health rules,” the ACC official said.
ACC Secretary Muhammad Dilwar Bakht, director generals ANM Al Firoz, Mofizur Rahman Bhuiyan, Md Zaheer Raihan, Md Rezanur Rahman, Saeed Mahbub Khan, and Md Zakir Hossain, among others, spoke at the meeting. The virtual meeting was moderated by ACC Director General (ICT and Training Division) AKM Sohail.