Bridges Minister’s remarks on peacekeepers implicating TI baseless and confusing: TIB

Staff Reporter

Dhaka, 20 June 2023: Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) expresses grave concern over the baseless and confusing remarks made by Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader implicating Transparency International (TI) in alleged undermining of Bangladesh’s role  in the UN peacekeeping missions.

Issuing a statement on Tuesday, TIB said the accusations have been imposed on TI illogically and such an unfounded statement from a high-level politician serving as an important minister serves as an example of desperation and lack of responsibility.

Referring to the published news in different media outlets regarding the remarks of the minister, Dr.  Iftekharuzzaman, executive director of TIB said, ‘We would like to categorically state that Transparency International (TI) or Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) has never worked on the issues related to UN peacekeeping missions, and the subject is outside the scope their work. Hence, the allegations are baseless and motivated. It is even more disturbing as the minister has implicated TIB with the political party BNP, which is completely baseless. We want to clearly state that TI and TIB are absolutely non-partisan organizations which do not work for or against any political parties. At the core of TIB’s organizational strategy and credibility is its impeccable political neutrality. The respectable minister’s remarks are confusing and represents a lack of political prudence and responsibility.’

Referring to a recorded version of the Minister’s remarks where he mentioned Transparency International (TI), Dr. Zaman expressed disappointment that further confusion has been created by state-run BSS and some other news outlets, as they erroneously, if not purposively, implied TIB instead of TI. Such mix-ups have occurred many a times in the past as well, which is undesirable.’

Notably, another international human rights organisation recently called for scrutiny of the UN Peacekeepers of Bangladesh in the UN missions which was reported in the local media on 12 June 2023. TIB has been visibly made the victim of reaction to that statement wrongfully by the high-level political leader, which is unacceptable and self-defeating. TIB calls upon stakeholders to resort to more informed and responsible practices on such important matters in the future.

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