In denial: Moeen U Ahmed

E-Bangladesh

E-Bangladesh

E-Bangladesh is a News/Headlines service and a group blog aimed at bringing the news and analysis from Bangladesh to its readers.

  • General Moeen U Ahmed denies taking approximately Taka 1 crore loan.
  • Puts the loan amount at Taka 35 lakh.
  • Claims he is a victim of “internet propaganda.”
  • Prospectus issued by Trust Bank itself contradicts Moeen.
  • [Mashuqur Rahman, USA.]

    Since my post two days ago regarding General Moeen U Ahmed’s tenure as chairman of Trust Bank, General Moeen has responded to the concerns raised by me and others in the Bangladeshi blogosphere by giving a series of interviews to various television, radio and print journalists.

    Today General Moeen’s response has been covered by every major Bangladeshi newspaper. General Moeen’s denial and the many interviews he has given surprised me. The blanket coverage in Bangladeshi papers was also surprising. I am sure Bangladeshi readers are confused since this may be the first time they are hearing about the Trust Bank issue since no papers have ever covered it. They must be wondering what General Moeen is responding to.

    [display_podcast]

    In his interviews, General Moeen denied taking out a loan of approximately 1 crore taka. Instead he said that the loan amount was much less and the internet reports about his loan were “false” and meant to “malign” him. BDNews24 reports:

    General Moeen U Ahmed Saturday brushed aside the allegations of taking Tk 1 crore in loans from a bank and said it was all designed to “malign” him.

    The army chief, visiting the US, said: “It’s not true that I borrowed Tk 1 crore from Trust Bank. It’s not true either that I paid back Tk 60 lakh.”

    The interview was aired on BBC Radio (Bangla).

    According to the allegations what BBC said was spread by the internet, Moeen borrowed about Tk 1 crore in loans from Trust Bank in 2005 and repaid more than Tk 60 lakh until the end of 2006.

    “It’s totally false. I have borrowed only as much as permitted for an army officer in line with Trust Bank rules. I didn’t borrow even one taka more than permitted.”

    Moeen said he borrowed only Tk 35 lakh, which includes Tk 25 lakh in house loans.

    “It’s all documented. Anyone can see that. Anybody can contact me. I am paying back the loans with the money I get from house rents,” he told BBC by phone.

    “It (allegation) was all designed to malign me.”

    The New Nation quotes General Moeen as follows:

    General Moeen said, “I have the documents whatever I have said. Anyone can see these documents at any time. So, I took a loan of Tk 99 lakh and repaid Tk 66 lakh in the following year is absolutely a blatant lie.

    “It is a propaganda against me which is being carried out intentionally. This propaganda is being carried out against me with an ulterior motive to destroy my image and undermine me before the members of the public. And, this propaganda has been carried out when I have come to the United Nations, and when the expatriates living in the United Kingdom and the United States have been extending warm welcome to me. Perhaps, someone could not tolerate this affection and love of expatriate Bangladeshis toward me and has resorted to making false, fabricated and baseless propaganda against me. But, I have nothing to say against such propaganda and spreading of lies. However, if somebody wants to know about the income and expenditure statement of mine or Trust Bank loan I will welcome him,” he said.

    The Army Chief said he had always been trying to remain transparent to his conscience. “So, I don’t want to make any comment on such propaganda through Internet. There is no problem if anyone wants to know about my account officially or privately,” he said.

    However, the prospectus filed on May 17, 2007 by Trust Bank to the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission notes that General Moeen had an outstanding loan amount of Taka 99,69,215 at the end of 2005 and an outstanding loan amount of Taka 33,15,323 at the end of 2006. The following chart appears on page 20 of the prospectus:

    [Click image to enlarge.]

    According to Trust Bank’s prospectus, the loan amounts to General Moeen specified on page 20 are “per audited accounts for the years ended on 31 Dec 2005 and 2006.”

    [Cover, Trust Bank prospectus. Click image to enlarge.]

    In his various interviews General Moeen went on to describe how he has been repaying the loan. However, my earlier post did not deal with the issue of how General Moeen has been repaying his loan. My post dealt with three issues that appear to run afoul of Bangladesh Bank regulations for banks. These issues are:

  • General Moeen and his brother, Iqbal U Ahmed, are both on the board of directors of Trust Bank. This appears to violate Bangladesh Bank regulations that state “not more than one member of a family will become director of a bank. For this purpose family members shall include spouse, parents, children, brothers and sisters of the director and other persons dependent on him/her.”
  • General Moeen points out that his brother was already the Managing Director of the Bank when General Moeen became Chairman of Trust Bank. However, in November 2006, while General Moeen was Chairman, his brother was reappointed Managing Director of Trust Bank. This appears to violate the Bangladesh Bank regulations which state that the above “restriction shall apply to appointment/reappointment of the directors”.
  • General Moeen had an outstanding loan amount from Trust Bank well in excess of the Taka 500 it appears he is allowed to borrow as a member of the board of directors according to Bangladesh Bank regulations. The regulations restrict lending to directors of a bank. The regulations state: “the total amount of the loan facilities extendable to a Director or to his relatives should not exceed 50% of the paid-up value of the shares of that bank held in Director’s own name.” General Moeen owns 10 shares of Trust Bank worth Taka 1000 before the IPO, as specified on page 23 of Trust Bank’s prospectus.
  • It was refreshing to see General Moeen address the concerns about his tenure as Chairman of Trust Bank. However, his response has raised a discrepancy between the amount of loan he states he took out and the loan amount stated in Trust Bank’s own official filing with the Bangladesh government.

    General Moeen also did not address the Bangladesh Bank regulations and whether his tenure ran afoul of them. I hope that General Moeen or Trust Bank will clarify the discrepancy between what General Moeen has stated and what is in the Trust Bank prospectus, as well as the issues raised by the Bangladesh Bank regulations.

    This is no small matter. Many individuals in Bangladesh have been thrown in jail by General Moeen’s government because what they stated from memory on their “wealth statements” did not match their bank records.


    Mashuqur Rahman [http://www.docstrangelove.com] is one of the highest read Bangladeshi-American bloggers. Critically acclaimed for his incisive analysis on Bangladesh, US foreign policy and dedicated advocacy of human rights.

    [Read posts by Mashuqur Rahman]

    profilepic

    E-Bangladesh is a News/Headlines service and a group blog aimed at bringing the news and analysis from Bangladesh to its readers.


    39 Responses to “In denial: Moeen U Ahmed”

    1. Rumi

      Let’s do one thing. Let’s not convict our self-promoted general with corruption charges. His standard and our standard should not be the same. While in his views, a politician should prove he/she is honest and one is guilty until proven otherwise, let us give him the benefit of the supreme law of this civilization. In our eye, he is innocent until proven guilty.

      As shown in this post, the discrepency between his rhetorics and the document are very clear. If ACC or joint task force could get a fraction of such documented discrepency against the jailed politicians, my guess they would have been hanged by this time.

      I heard that this government has come to bring back a level playing field for all. So to keep up to its promise, on the face of these corruption charges, General Moeen either should have been in jail pending investigation and trial, or all the prisoners awaiting trial for corruption should be freed and allowed to explain their story in BBC, ATN, and other newsoutlets.

      Again very good job E-Bangladesh.

    2. Corporal Shihab

      Dear Mash: Your concern is logical and let us wait to hear Trust Bank. In the meantime please enlighten us on the ”individuals in Bangladesh have been thrown in jail by General Moeen’s government because what they stated from memory on their ‘wealth statements’ did not match their bank records.” Please name one who is wrongly imprisoned. B M Bakir Hossain?

    3. Amit Paul

      Shihab, I think ACC should investigate this issue. You are right in one sense that we should hear from Trust Bank. But statement of Trust Bank should not be the bible. Because one of the accused is still sitting as the Managing Director. So third party investigation is must for the ensuring “level playing field.”

      By the way, Shihab, lots of arrest have been made with out arrest warrant and after arrests cases have been filed and all. Your Memory should not be short. Alarming part is that there is no freedom of press in Bangladesh. Local media is not reporting anything. E-BD is the brightest star of the darkest night of the Bangladesh related media.

    4. Corporal Shihab

      Sir, you are very correct about the press freedom that prevail (will) in Bangladesh. Unlike any country in the world, hardly we see any investigative report and instead we hear scoop news referring reliable source and most of the cases they were found to be fabricated.

      We find the news with same language and text as if they are written on the same table. I was coming across some novels (fictions may be) when the journalist endanger their life to bring out off the record news competing other news agency. We are yet to see that type of journalism. Most of the newspapers of Bangladesh are owned by leading business houses and their editors loose their job once they differ from their sponsors.

      There is also another risk of immature handling of any issue. Our highly remunerated young journalists suffer from the emotion then the fact. On Trust Bank, let us wait for their explanations.

    5. Sharika

      10/10 on that Mash. Great work. Let’s see what is coming from the army people after reading this post.

    6. Fact

      I do not think he will do such a kacha kaj. Mash, can you please post the whole statement in which this anamoly is shown? So far it only shows Brigadier General Shakhawat?

    7. Mash

      Fact, I provided a link in the post to the entire Trust Bank prospectus available on the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission website. For your convenience I am providing the link again in this comment. Click here to see the entire document. Go to page 20 of the document to see the chart. Also, again as a convenience, I provided the entire chart in the above post that shows as its first line the amount of the loan General Moeen had with Trust Bank. The loan amount in the prospectus contradicts General Moeen’s public statements.

    8. Imran

      The time period when a major chunk of the loan was paid off is between 2005-2006. We have to keep in mind that during most of that period, the BNP was misappropriating the country’s money left and right. There was no oversight of such improper monetary transactions by most of the high-ups, including the army brass. My understanding is that General Moeen and company had no idea at that time that one day they would be interfering into public affairs in the name of rooting out corruption from the country, which actually they did on 1/11.

      Is it not possible that General Moeen also took advantage of the situation during that period of extensive corruption and availed himself of various improprieties, which at the time he believed would not be put under a microscope given the fact that a majority of the rulers were doing so? Did he jump into that “corruption” bandwagon thinking that nobody would notice?

      It’s not only Moeen, other top brasses in the forces should also be put under the microscope. Most likely more would be revealed about more of our so-called “patriotic” military officers who portray themselves today as the bastion of cleansing corruption from the nation.

    9. Nirbashito

      Coroporal Shihab, are you familiar with the concept of “Conflict of Interest”? And what is your opinion on the “journalistic worth” of E-Bangladesh’s reports, e.g. this one?

      To the rest of the responders here, do the banking laws of Bangladesh say anything about Conflict of Interest in explicit terms? Of course, the BB policy for NOT appointing brothers on the same bank’s board is precisely designed to prevent such a conflict of interest, regardless of whether the brothers are army generals, professional bankers, or dharmaputra judhisthir’s progeny.

    10. Mizan

      What Turst Bank statement? One has to be a complete idiot to think that Trust Bank will issue a statement that will go against General Moeen. If a businessman or politician was at General Moeen’s position, special forces (secret police as Soviet Union once had) would have been arrested and taken in remand by now.

      A corrupted regime is cleaning up corruption. What a joke!

    11. Tahsin Hyder

      Yeah. I agree: should investigate the issue. But we must also remember even if ACC investigates the real issue and check for records what they found will never be disclosed in public as Task Force won’t axe its own General. Why I rather wonder for what true reasons he took the loans for, and how did he re-pay such big sums of money so early. He’s not an enterpreneur of course!

    12. Imran

      Moeen is the “savior” of Bangladesh. He has embarked on a journey to rid our nation of corruption. He blames it on politicians, businessman, etc. for the country’s ills. Now what? The savior himself is corrupt? Or should we say, innocent until proven guilty? Or should we send in a thousand strong security force to take him into custody and keep him interned for quite sometime without any due process of law? General Moeen, what should we do? You have done so to too many of our students, teachers the same — interned them without due process of law!

      Now you will have your Trust Bank people cook the books? Now you will have your Moinul Hossein’s start a propoganda war claiming such revelation an attempt to put you in disrepute?

      You may do that today and save your skin to stay in power BUT history, especially in Bangladesh, shows that it doesn’t work.

      I once watched the current anti-corruption chief, General Mashud tell us on Ali Zakar’s “Alo-ei Bhuban Bhora” programme, as to how the military views itself from the inside. He basically told us, if I am correct, that the Jolpai’s believe that they are the only clean and honest people in Bangladesh and anything outside of the forces is the root of corruption in our society. If that is true, which is not and there are many examples that violate that assumption, then General Moeen, if he did violate the rules and involved himself in this scam, is another contradiction to that wave of thought in the military society.

      General Moeen, recall the Bengali saying, “What goes around, comes around”? It’s just a matter of time.

    13. Amused

      To the armchair activists on this site, instead of whining, please enlighten us with some constructive ideas about how to get rid of corruption in Bangladesh. Surely you’re not in denial that we are corrupt as a nation?

    14. Manush

      Moeen needs to come out with some evidence to support his rhetoric about his loan repayment. Just rhetoric is not good enough! Also, the fact that Bangladeshi newspapers did not report this until Moeen made his clarification to BBC kinda shows the press freedom we have.

    15. Ahmed Halabi Al Khalabi

      What are so many of our top brass of the army and CTG including spineless Yesuddin doing in the US. These are all CIA agents busy selling off the country to killer Bush and his mad war-dog killer administration. The US is the biggest Satan who will suck all poor nations through their local collaborators and enslave countries like Bangladesh to keep the US economy buoyant.

      The US and their dalaal street organizations like the WB-IMF-WTO-UN ghetto have labeled us as poor and corrupt countries to plunder our economy by first promoting corruption so that money can be taken out of countries like Bangladesh and then the owners of the looted wealth are put behind bars by US, UK, UN appointed fascist military juntas like the one in Bangladesh now labeled as CTG. Once the corrupt leaders are jailed Bangladesh’s economy is further depleted by the US and the West by stealing our looted money stashed in US and European banks by the war mongering savage bastards who had once ruthlessly massacred the native population. Bastard hypocrites and liars now talk of civilization!

      The killers of innocent Iraqis shall be dealt a death blow if they dare to turn Bangladesh into a Iraq or Somalia or Haiti. America’s streets too will one day resemble destroyed Iraqi cities.

      There’s no reason for Bangladesh to be labeled as poor and hopeless by the bastards.

      Bangladesh can easily blossom into a prosperous economy if we seriously cooperate with China and India who are our next door neighbors. Moves are already underway. In the process massive blood may be spilled but we will win this time as our allies are now more stronger and smarter.

      The CIA must not be allowed to alienate Bangladesh from its regional allies. The overgrown US economy will bring its own downfall. Asia is already becoming the next superpower. Asia must not fuel the US economy. Countries like Bangladesh must wake up and flourish along with the regional economic powers. Towing the fascist US line will keep us mired in poverty for ever.

      Down with the US! Long live Asia!

    16. Javed Rashid

      General Moeen’s rhetoric does not match the fact. His brother Iqbal U Ahmed of Trust Bank has published a statement in Amader Somoy today about this matter, but has miserably failed to explain the discrepancy of the 2005 and 2006 laon amount as stated in the bank’s Prospectus. General Moeen should be in jail as soon as he arrives in Bangladesh until the investigation is completed.

    17. IQO

      Thanks Mashuq for taking the issue on! When I first posted the info in here (as ai) http://jrahman.wordpress.com/2007/10/11/on-corruption and did not see any reply for almost two days, I later put it as comment at Dristipat (same post). I am glad you took it more professionally and doing a great job. Keep up your good work. Only conscious citizens like you can make corruption checked, not some force with or without any uniform.

    18. Mash

      IQO, thanks for your excellent research. I read your comment on Mukti and your reference to the Bangladesh Bank regulations. Great work!

      There is also a new post on Mukti that references your comment: http://jrahman.wordpress.com/2007/10/22/56/. I hope this episode leads to more transparency and accountability in Bangladesh. I also hope it highlights the importance of due process.

    19. Niloy

      How could General Moeen lie about his so called Harvard visit in the name Bangladesh Army and our beloved Bangladesh.

      An hour ago Kate Hoagland, a spokesperson for Ash Institute of Harvard, officially confirmed there are no public events around General Moeen’s visit to Harvard. General Moeen is not officially invited by Harvard president or any other Harvard institute.

      Last week: http://ksgnotes1.harvard.edu/ksginfo/enews.nsf/KSGToday?Openform&Date=10/13/2007

      This week: http://ksgnotes1.harvard.edu/ksginfo/enews.nsf/KSGToday?Openform&Date=10/20/2007

      Instead there are informal meeting with a lecturer named Dr. David King and his class of 12 students, which are not open to the public or the press. No video, audio or transcript will be available for such informal courtesy visit.

      This is totally in contrary with General Moeen’s own remark, Please check video of his interview:

      http://deshivoice.blogspot.com/2007/10/genereal-moeens-interview.html

      General Moeen proudly mentioned the very reason he is taking this long trip because Harvard University has invited him to deliver a speech. He did not fail to mention that Bangladesh should feel proud that such a big institution has invited its military chief. While he was talking about receiving his invitation, his face was beaming, glowing with pride.

      Surely, we should be proud of such event, that was suppose to take place today, on October 22. When I tried to learn about this scheduled historical event for Bangladesh from Harvard University web portal as well as their offices, unfortunately, I was completely unsuccessful. Neither their web portal nor their offices can trace such event exist.

      http://www.ksg.harvard.edu

      Nevertheless, I cannot give up! It hits my pride. My General is not lying for sure, so it must be the incompetent officio of Harvard who does not have any knowledge about this historic event for Bangladesh. Alternatively, may be something more interesting than that. Is it possible that America is giving security of my general highest priority and therefore not disclosing his appearance? Could be.

      However, some of the sources I have with Harvard gave me very heart breaking news this morning, what is it? It is not Harvard but a teaching staff namely Lecturer Dr. David C. King who invited General Moeen in his personal capacity to speak in front of students of his own class therefore this scheduled event is not published in Harvard notice board.

      http://ksgfaculty.harvard.edu/david_king

      Though, by now I am very disappointed but still looking for an escape window not for my self but for my nation from this disgraceful situation. I started my inquiry about who is this David C. King. In my mind, he must be someone very special with high connection that brought my general here in US with hope that this will be glorifying for his nation, which is, mine too. But when bad news comes it comes from all sides, I take a deep breath, lungful of air and exhale a very long mouthful of air with complete frustration. Dr. David C. King is a Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, where he teaches about the US Congress, Election Reform, and Youth Political Engagement. Professor King joined the Harvard faculty in 1992. Some sources claimed Harvard teacher originating from West Bengal India were persuaded to convert this event to be an official one but failed to get permission from Harvard authority.

      Afterwards, I did also learn that Bangladesh government sought his advice under Electoral reform program aided and wanted to appoint him as special consultant during his visit to Bangladesh. For that reason and out of courtesy, he invited General Moeen to come to his school and to speak to his class and probably finalize the deal of him working as consultant. That is it, nothing more and nothing less remains about this story and my investigation ended there with a face longer then when I started. Now readers it is up to you to decide how proud you feel out of this ordinary story to make this event extraordinary for my beloved nation. Very Astounding indeed! It’s real shame for us all, for all the Bangladeshi people who live aboard, for Bangladesh army, for Bangladesh in deed.

    20. Hasib

      This news is loosing momentum as mainstream world media did not pick up the news for whatever reason. It would definitely serve Bangladesh better if some bloggers did wire service style reporting to major news agencies occasionally, even anonymously.

    21. Saif

      Let’s wait and see what happens after reading of this news by General Moeen. I wish he will start walking to central jail or should be freed 222.

    22. M A Rahman

      Thanks Mr. Mashuqur Rahman. God bless you! You save our Bangladesh from most corrupted person (General Moeen U Ahmed). Bangladeshi media and newspapers could not (scared) publish on the corruption of Moeen U Ahmed. Please try to publish the corruption of General Moeen U Ahmed in the foreign media and newspapers (New York Daily News, NY Post, Washington Post, NY Times, Wasington Times, NY Newsday, Time Magazine, BBC, Reuters, AP, VOA, CNN). We don’t want to accept a most corrupted person like General Moeen U Ahmed as future president of Bangladesh.

    23. Selim

      For corrupt practices and telling lies to the nation General Moeen has disgraced himself and the army. So, Moeen must be called back to the country immediately, stripped of his rank, dismissed and should be sent to jail with his brother Iqbal. We love the army. We appeal to the members of the armed forces to arrest this liar and corrupt general as soon as he comes back.

    24. Hiron

      The supreme commander cannot sit idle when the army chief has been found involved in corrupt practices. An officer cannot tell a lie. By telling lie General Moeen has broken his military oath and code of conduct. Moeen must be given the discharge letter as soon as he lands. In the meantime arrest warrant should be issued and he should be arrested straight from the airport. I hope Mr. President will show some guts now and save the nation from total disaster.

    25. Anwar Khan

      General Moeen should be arrested for this allegation and should be remanded by JTF and held without bail like other corrupt people. He is not an exception. Everyone is equal in the eyes of law.

    26. Tokai

      Moeen is not only the army chief but he is the CEO of Bangladesh army which is now a financial institution. If he claims he took 35 lakhs and the prospectus says 99 lakhs, where did the difference of 66 lakhs taka go? Did Iqbal launder the money through him or did he launder it himself? This needs investigation immediately.

    27. Shahid

      What a brilliant job! It proved why this stupid man doing all the nonsense under the name of rooting out corruption. Some body should publish details of his family assets in Bangladesh and abroad. How much does it cost to send his son to USA. Where did Moeen get money to fund his son’s study in USA?

    28. Imran

      Moeen knows he is in trouble. Isn’t it ironic that today adviser Matin revealed that interim cabinet will take up the issue of the formation of a national security council? These power usurpers know that if they don’t come up with a plan to save their souls after a power transfer, they will be doomed. So that’s why they need, maybe a NSC. I believe if they are unable to secure some kind of security for their future, they won’t allow a smooth transfer of power.

      But, at least, we now know what kind of irregularity was committed by Moeen in taking loans in amounts more than allowed. We want to know how he was able to pay-off 66 lakh taka in about a year, being a government servant. We demand answers now or will extract the truth from him after his military government is history. The people demand the truth and nothing but the truth.

    29. A civilian

      I think Moeen is fake, he does not talk eye to eye. His motives are yet to be figured out. But his track record does not speak very high of him. He is hypocrite and he does not enjoy any popularity in the army at all. People are afraid of him and his gang that’s all. His days will soon run out of steam and wait and see where it all ends up.

    30. obhaga

      Before retirement Gen. Moeen has dismissed 3 Lt. Col, 2 Majors & 2 Captains. As because they were dismissed in the ground of asking him question regarding BDR incident which is violation of Military Code of Conduct.
      My question is:-
      After declaring emergency on 11th Jan he did not declare him as CMLA (Chief Marshall Law Administrator)though he was CAS (Chief of Army Staff), according to the Military Act, no serving officer of the defense forces can appear him/herself in front of media/press giving statement about any issues which he violated times and again.
      According to the Military Act31 :- to control any sort of mutiny, CAS does not need to take permission from Defence / Prime Minister.

      Saddest part :- In the name of Coalition force he corrupted the whole army.

      Who is going to sue CAS for his above acts and failures…….

      Shame on you……

    31. dragon hill

      his is very sad right now because of those politician thieves again came and destroying our nation!I think we were atleast save in Moeen’s period.Dear blogers I dont think Moeen had an intention to take over the power.Dont kno how come you people think like this!If he had that intention then he could be the president of Bangladesh right now.This is really very sad that most of us only give bad comments to General moeen but dont come to know what he did and how did he want to save the nation!only because of this we are still cannot improve our mother land as we selected those corrupted politicians and also support those people.We dont know how to give appreciation to people but we only know how to degrade a person! shame on us as we are like this!

    32. dragon hill

      People will realize what actually Moeen did for our nation.Even he really tried to save the nation but he could not only because of our nature!As a nation we just know how to destroy ourselves and also degrade our country in the world. We only think of our-self but not for the interest of the country.

    33. dragon hill

      Now nobody talked about moeen!!!hahahahahahahaha….dis people only talks for nothing and we think they either understood that they were wrong about moeen or will understand in the near future…..Cowards Bloggers shame on you guys and also spit on your mouth

    34. NURUL

      I believe that MOYEN U AHMED did not any wrong by taking loan from trust bank. HE REALLY TRIED TO DO SOMETHING FOR BANGLADESH.

    Comments are closed.