Corrupt govt can’t implement PMB project: KhaledaAbdullah Juberee and Tushar Hayat . Chittagong
The Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson, Khaleda Zia, on Saturday said corruption of the prime minister, her family and the government had forced the World Bank to cancel funding for the Padma Bridge project.
‘The prime minister and her family are directly involved in corruption. Padma Bridge is essential for our economy and it cannot be implemented by Bangladesh alone. The dream bridge would not come true because of Awami League’s corruption and it will have to take the responsibility World Bank has already said it would not be able to fund the project,’ she said at a rally at Bahaddarhat in Chittagong city.
Khaleda said World Bank smelt a rat at the very beginning of the project as ministers had demanded commission. ‘Investigations found involvement of the top leaders of the government in corruption in the project. Canadian police is in Bangladesh to investigate it. World Bank and other agencies also investigated, found involvement of ministers in graft and submitted reports to the government. But the government took no action against the people involved and instead created more scope for them to plunder public money,’ she said.
She said the present government would not be able to construct the Padma Bridge because of its corruption. ‘The minister accused of corruption was just transferred to another ministry.’
‘The government which is unable to provide the people with food and ensure their safety and security cannot be considered a government of the people, the opposition leader said accusing the government of compromising national interests. ‘They are traitors and whoever would vote for them would also be considered as traitors,’ she added.
Khaleda iterated that no elections would be allowed under a ‘partisan’ government and the BNP-led alliance would not contest such polls. She asked the government to accept the demand for a ‘neutral election-time caretaker government’ or face ‘people’s wrath’.
She said the government would not be allowed to stay in office a single moment after it served out. ‘The incumbents must restore the caretaker government system as it has removed the provision from the constitution,’ she added.
‘They often say polls under a caretaker government are not possible. But they are plotting to hold elections to Dhaka city corporations under administrators. If polls can be held under an administration, it can also be held under a caretaker government,’ she said.
Khaleda came to Chittagong to see the families of the people who died in Tuesday’s landslides and to distribute relief supplies among the victims. Chittagong mayor Manjur Alam welcomed her at the city gate.
At a rally at Pahartali Balika Vidyalaya in the afternoon, Khaleda said government had completely failed in management of natural calamities like landslides, torrential rains and floods. ‘They even failed to do the minimum duty to stand by the people.’
‘People in Chittagong are suffering after heavy rains, landslide and flooding. But the government did not stand by the people and help the victims. The government has completely failed in tackling the crisis,’ she said while distributing relief and financial assistance among the victims of landsides.
In her brief address before a huge crowd in Pahartali, the BNP chairperson said,
‘The BNP was beside the people in the past and would remain with them.’
Khaleda reached Chittagong at around 3:00pm. She handed over cheques for Tk 25,000 to 18 families. Ziaur Rahman Foundation organised the programme.
She will visit Feni this morning.
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