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reverse_swing
March 1, 2004, 12:44 PM
Proshika chief’s pet dogs in lap of luxury
Proshika president Qazi Faruque Ahmed spent Tk 113,000 for his pet dogs in one year from donors’ fund that was meant for the marginal people’s poverty alleviation, revealed an official audit.
This was one of the unusual heads of accounts on which the foreign-funded NGO ‘misused’ about Tk 110 crore in five years from 1996 to 2001.
“Spending from Proshika’s fund on housing, feeding, treatment and care of personal pet dogs of the Proshika president is contrary to financial discipline and a financial irregularity as well,” said the 160-page audit report with 10 volumes of annexure backing the findings.
Finance and Planning Minister M Saifur Rahman formally apprised the donors of such irregularities, but some of them seemed sceptical of the findings and suggested commissioning of international auditors to double-check the allegations.
The official audit, headed by a senior bureaucrat, detected 83 heads of expenses that also included sending dependents abroad on scholarship, depositing 2 per cent of the aid money against the foreign currency account, and exceeding the permissible limit of budget by Tk 75 crore.
Besides, irregularities in purchasing motorcycles worth more than Tk 1.28 crore have also been detected by the audit.
“In the name of poverty reduction, Proshika in fact is burdening the poor people with debt. The poor people are rather being exploited in this way,” the report said.
“Proshika is lending money it gets as grants from donors to the poor and charging high service charges from them to make profit,” it said.
Each of the ‘fortunate’ dogs was allocated Tk 111 to Tk 121 daily as food allowance while Tk 18,300 was spent for construction of a shed for them and Tk 25,570 for electrification of the shed.
Two German shepherd dogs were bought at Tk 19,700 for the Proshika boss on July 30, 2001.
The rest of the money was spent on vaccination, treatment, cleaning and some other heads for the welfare of the dogs, the audit report mentioned.
A sum of Tk 210,000 was spent on celebrating the birthday of the Proshika chief and other family anniversaries from the NGO fund, the report said, adding that spending such an amount of donor’s money, which is meant for the poor, for pets and birthdays is gross violation of terms and conditions.
Installation of a water pump at the Proshika chief’s residence cost Tk 79,481 and net grille Tk 56,375, while about Tk 650,000 was spent for furnishing his office and residence with security glass, the audit further mentioned.
The NGO’s fund was also misused on rates like paying residential electricity bills of Tk 40,051 against four vouchers between March 2000 and January 2001.
Installation of a security grille at the top floor of Qazi Faruque’s residence cost Tk 107,034.
Proshika also spent Tk 744,535 as salaries and allowances for 10 ansars deployed at Faruq’s residence between April 1999 and June 2001, which the report termed a serious financial irregularity and a gross abuse of power.
The Proshika president and his spouse spent Tk 1, 19,744.97 for treatment at the National Hospital, Singapore, without any advice of a specialist doctor, said the report, and termed it ‘corrupt practice’.
Qazi Faruque borrowed Tk 10,73,401 from the provident fund unlawfully, the report further said, adding that the Proshika president took the loan by abusing his power.

-NAZMUL AHSAN (Newage)

[Edited on 1-3-2004 by rezwan1977]

rafiq
March 1, 2004, 02:30 PM
there may have been all sorts of financial abuse, but another aspect to this story is the GOB trying to discredit Proshika for political reasons. Some outside donors are skeptical of the audit report. If any of you have ever been or are an auditor, you will recognize the difference in the nuetral language of an audit report and that of a political commentary (or is it a witchhunt?). anyway, all we can do is either believe what they feed us, or speculate about something opposite. The truth is always in between.

fab
March 1, 2004, 08:14 PM
But in a country that has been entitled the most corrupt in the world for three years in a row, these stories are more likely to be somewhat true.

Rubu
March 2, 2004, 05:27 PM
i wish i could be that dog!