The finance ministry has approved a Bangladesh Bank proposal to reintroduce the post of fourth deputy governor after three and a half years of the post becoming obsolete following the cyber theft of $81 million from the central bank’s foreign currency reserves.
The ministry gave the approval on January 2 as the BB in its plea said that the service of the fourth deputy governor was essential as the activities of the central bank had increased because of opening of new sections and wings, ministry officials told New Age.
Like before, the post of fourth deputy governor, which was first introduced in 2006, would be temporary and it would have to be preserved year-wise, said the ministry in its approval letter.
Now the central bank has three permanent deputy governor posts with two deputy governors serving. A search committee is now working to select the third.
The post of fourth deputy governor has remained suspended since May 31, 2016 after the removal of the then fourth deputy governor, Nazneen Sultana, on March 15, 2016.
The then BB governor, Atiur Rahman, stepped down over the $81 million foreign reserve theft from the BB’s accounts with the New York Federal Reserve Bank in February, 2016.
Nazneen and another deputy governor Abul Kashem were sacked on March 15, 2016.
The BB later appointed another deputy governor in place of Kashem but the post of fourth deputy governor has remained vacant.
Ministry officials said that as per the Bangladesh Bank Order 1972, the central bank has three permanent posts of deputy governor.
The government introduced the post of fourth deputy governor on temporary basis in 2006 following the BB’s plea that the post of fourth deputy governor was essential to strengthen the macroeconomy of the country, adopt necessary policy establishing governance in financial sector, prevent money laundering and develop the government and corporate bond market.
The government preserved the fourth deputy governor post in five phases between June 26, 2006 and May 31, 2016.
Finance ministry officials said that the government had not preserved the post of fourth deputy governor in last three and a half years following the reserve theft.
With the latest approval, the BB can now start a process for appointing the fourth governor, said a ministry official.
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