Muhammad Yunus Slams Proposal to Restructure Grameen Bank

Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus has raised concern over plans of the Bangladeshi government to restructure Grameen Bank, the microfinance institution he founded, and put it under the supervision of the country’s central bank.

Yunus resigned on Thursday (May 12) as managing director of the bank after Bangladesh’s highest court rejected his final appeal to remain in the post.

>> Supreme Court Panel Ends Muhammad Yunus’ Leadership of Grameen Bank

The Bangladeshi government has created a committee that will review the activities of the bank and a “proposal to change the structure of the Grameen Bank has been made,” Yunus said in a statement he issued after his resignation.

>> Grameen Bank to Be Put Under Bangladesh Bank’s Supervision

“I am very worried about this proposal,” Yunus wrote. “If Grameen Bank comes under the direct or indirect control or management of the Government, then politics will rear its head in Grameen Bank.”

Yunus also urged the Bangladeshi government to let the directors of the bank’s board select and appoint the next chairperson. The government currently has that authority.

Meantime, after global condemnation over Yunus’ removal from Grameen Bank, Bangladeshi Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith said the government plans to offer Yunus a position as emeritus member of the bank to recognize his contributions. Muhith did not elaborate on the responsibilities and roles of an emeritus member, AHN says.

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    Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.