Take stern action against corrupts: PM

DHAKA, Jan 17, 2019 : Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today put emphasis on establishing good governance and graft-free administration to build a developed and prosperous country, instructing the authorities concerned to take stern actions against the corrupts.

“Establishing good governance and graft-free administration is a must to achieve our goal of building a hunger- and-poverty-free developed and prosperous Bangladesh,” she said while addressing officials of the Public Administration Ministry at Bangladesh Secretariat here this morning.

“You’ll have to give specific directives up to the grassroots level, if anybody is indulged in corruption, proper action will have to be taken against him or her,” she told the authorities concerned.

Sheikh Hasina, who is also in-charge of the Public Administration Ministry, paid her first visit to the ministry after her reelection as the prime minister for the fourth time.

Through the visit to the Public Administration Ministry, the premier started her programme of visiting the ministries during her new term of office.

The prime minister said her government has raised the salary-allowances and other facilities of the government employees manifold.

“I think there is no need for committing corruption as we’ve fulfilled all their requirements … why the graft will take place? The people will have to change their mentality,” she said.

State Minister for Public Administration Farhad Hossain delivered the welcome address, while secretary of the ministry Faiz Ahmed gave an overview of the activities of the ministry.

The prime minister said her government has adopted ‘zero tolerance policy’ against terrorism, militancy and narcotics, while it declared a war against corruption. “Our fight against terrorism and graft will continue,”she asserted.

She said the government increased everything including salary and allowances of the government employees.

“I can say unhesitatingly that there is no such an instance in any country of the world of the rate we raised the salary of the government employees,” she said.

“We’ve made all arrangements including housing facilities for them at the upazila level so that they can provide public services in beautiful environment,” she added.

Sheikh Hasina also laid stress on giving promotion to the government officials on the basis of their efficiency.

“In the case of giving promotion, priority will have to be given to efficiency, not only seniority … I think those who work with honesty and maintain discipline should be considered for promotion, she said.

Terming training as very important for the government officials, the prime minister underscored the need for imparting long-term training to them to achieve their efficiency.

“It’s not possible to earn efficiency by the government officials through receiving only four-month training,” she said.

Saying that the Public Administration Ministry is the heart of serving the people, the prime minister directed the officials and employees of the ministry to work with efficiency to serve the country.

In this connection, she said the Awami League government has taken necessary steps so that officers and employees of the public administration can accomplish responsibilities peacefully at their work places.

Pointing out the big budget announced by her government, Sheikh Hasina put emphasis on utilising the budget money properly to change the fate of the people by establishing a hunger- and poverty-free Bangladesh.

“We want to change the lot of the grassroots people…we want there will be no extreme poor in the country.”

She stressed using modern technology and digital system to ensure transparency and accountability at all spheres of the administration. “We want the officials and employees of the administration to move keeping pace of the world,” she said.

The premier said the government introduced annual performance agreement and integrity strategy so that the officials concerned can know about their responsibilities in advance. Through the programmes, she said, the work of different ministries and divisions are being executed fast.

Referring to the Public Services Act, she said the law was passed in 2018 and from now it will be effective.

“There was a need for such a law…the big thing is that we have enacted such a law in the country after many days,” she said, underscoring the need for practicing the law.

She opined that the fault of the law could be found out and it could be amended after practicing the act. “The government employees will be more confident in their work while practicing the law,” she said.

About the BNP-Jamaat debacle in the last general elections, the prime minister said the people fully rejected BNP-Jamaat nexus as the evil forces unleashed mayhem including killing people through arson attacks across the country in 2013, 2014 and 2015 to foil polls and topple the government.

“The BNP-Jamaat harboured terrorism, militancy and corruption, and created Bangla Bhai during their five-year misrule from 2001-2006. That’s why the countrymen rejected them again like the 2008 elections,” she said.

She said the country’s people gave huge mandate to the Awami League through the December 30 elections. “We’ve got an opportunity to serve the people for the third consecutive term… becoming a prime minister is not a big thing. I think it’s a scope for serving the people.”

The prime minister expressed her determination to celebrate golden jubilee of the country’s independence in 2021 by establishing Bangladesh as a hunger-and poverty-free country and build Bangladesh as a developed and prosperous one by 2041.

At the outset of her speech, Sheikh Hasina paid rich tributes to former public administration minister Syed Ashraful Islam, who passed way recently.

“He was like my younger brother,” she said, praying for the eternal peace of the departed soul.