TIB calls the move unethical, illegal and a means of protecting corruption
Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (DWASA) board has recommended reappointing its current managing director Taqsem A Khan for another three-year term.
The move was made at a special board meeting of DWASA on Saturday. Eleven board members attended the online meeting.
The proposal will be sent to the Ministry of Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives on Sunday, several board members, present at the meeting, confirmed this.
After his disputed appointment as the managing director of DWASA on October 13, 2009, Taqsem has been in charge of the organisation for 11 years, in a questionable process, Transparency International Bangladesh said in a statement on Saturday.
Even at the time of his first appointment, the concerned ministry issued documented instructions, on the allegation of irregularities, to take precaution during the next appointment, the anti-corruption watchdog said.
However, his reappointment was cleared with the support of an influential quarter and the board's opinion was ignored – sometimes by increasing the age limit, replacing the recent board meeting's recommendation with an expired one from an earlier meeting – TIB Executive Director Dr Iftekharuzzaman said.
There has been some violation of rules and regulations every time he has renewed appointment, Iftekharuzzaman said citing media reports and other reliable sources.
Taqsem was reappointed as the managing director of DWASA in October 2017 for five consecutive times.
His last extended term will expire on October 14, 2020. And the current proposal has been made to reappoint Taqsem for the sixth term.
However, TIB has called the move unethical, illegal, and a means of protecting corruption.
The reappointment of DWASA's current managing director, despite all the serious allegations of failure and irregularities against him, has turned the state's commitment to ensuring integrity in WASA – namely good governance in the country – into a farce, it said in a statement.
"There was no mention of if an application was invited for the post following the rules, who applied, why they were not considered eligible, or why the present managing director is the only right fit, and why it is necessary to renew the term of the same person year after year, violating rules and regulations," Iftekharuzzaman said.
However, the woes of the people during the almost decade-long tenure of the incumbent managing director is not unknown to anyone, he maintained.
The appointment of a new managing director, with qualifications and experience in the relevant sector, should be completed transparently before the last extended term of the current managing director expires, the TIB executive director said.