I have been one month working with Grameen Bank people, I met twice Prof. Yunus, and I visited dozens of borrowers, their families and activities. Grameen Bank works, it made and is making a huge difference in Bangladesh and in all countries where microcredit has been introduced in the last three decades following the Grameen model. Sign the petitions to preserve the Bank independence from the (corrupt) Government. Two minutes of your time for a reale cause.
Originally posted on Creating a World Without Poverty:
Todd Bernhardt is Director of Marketing and Communications at Grameen Foundation.
As you might have read in the news this week, the Bangladeshi government seems to be moving into the end game in its longtime effort to take over Grameen Bank, a move that has been widely criticized within Bangladesh and around the world. To briefly summarize, the cabinet – presided over by Prime Minister Sheik Hasina – voted on Thursday to amend the Grameen Bank Ordinance of 1983, effectively removing the Board of Directors’ right to choose the Bank’s Managing Director, and vesting that power instead in the Board’s government-appointed (and aligned) chairman.
As troubling as that disenfranchisement of the Bank’s 8.3 million borrower-owners is (more than 8 million of these owners are poor women), equally troubling is a directive from the cabinet to the Finance Ministry to examine and report on the salaries and benefits that Grameen Bank founder Professor Muhammad Yunus received after he turned 60, which is the official age of retirement from the Bank. It also asked the Ministry to examine whether he earned foreign currency that was tax-exempt during his time as Managing Director.