Rights Groups Protested WB in Climate Resilience Fund

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Dhaka, 15th November 2012. Today four civil society right groups climate networks and twelve organization has organized a human chain and rally in front of national press club in Dhaka and protested recent announcement of World Bank (WB) control over climate resilience fund, and also criticize government’s dubious role or slippage of earlier position of ownership on the fund. They have demanded that both Bangladesh Climate Change Resilience Fund (BCCRF) and Bangladesh Climate Change Trust Fund (BCCTF) should come under a single autonomous board, must be with democratic ownership. As they stated democratic ownership means taking representation from both party in power and opposition and also from the victim population.

The rally has participated by Campaign for Sustainable Rural Livelihood (CSRL), Climate Finance Governance Network (CFGN), Equity and Justice Working Group Bangladesh (EquityBD), Network on Climate Change Bangladesh (NCCB), Arpon, Bangladesh Bhumihin Somity, Bangladesh Krishok Federation, Surakkha and Agrogoti Foundation, Jatiya Sramik Jote, Nature Campaign Bangladesh, Manush Manusher Jonny, Unnayan Dhara Trust, Self Development, Udayan Bangladesh, United People Trust, On Line Knowledge Trust. The rally was moderated by Mustafa Kamal Akanda of EquityBD; among the speakers are Joyanta Acharjya, Badrul Alam, Subol Sarker, Nurul Amin, Mizanur Rahman Bijoy and Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of EquityBD. They have carried a banner, which stated that “WB control on BCCRF is a disaster for vulnerable communities; Government must follow Prime Minister declared position. Bangladesh does not want to a bad precedence for other countries on accepting WB control in climate fund”.

Joyannta Acharja said that, most of the WB investment still in extractive industries which is mostly responsible for climate damages, so it’s a climate culprit, now its want to control climate finance market. Badurl Alam criticisized dubious government role, during 2010 January government ministers and others were declared that government will own the fund and WB will manage the fund only for three years, they will do capacity development and gradually hand over the management to the government. Now WB screwing government to take full control the fund in keeping Padma Bridge financing pressure in ahead. WB has also slippage from earlier commitment that it was committed to take 1 % interest or service charge, now it has announced take 4 %, which is unethical. Mizanur Rahman Bijoy of NCCB said that, WB involvement is a threat our national sovereignty, he also said it is shame to UK, USA, and EU who are putting pressure on our government to accept WB control. Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said that, WB control over fund in fact giving leverage to the Bank to put conditionality of privatization and commercialization on our essential services like education and health and liberalization of our market for multi national companies.

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