Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Chairman Iqbal Mahmood has said that allowing legalisation of bribes – by misusing a facility put in place to bring undisclosed earnings into the mainstream – is unacceptable.
He made the remarks while exchanging views with media personnel on the ACC's 2019 annual report on Monday.
The report was handed over to the president by the corruption watchdog on Sunday night.
During the meeting, the ACC chairman further said that the report made several recommendations to curb corruption.
Iqbal Mahmood said a recommendation has been made to the president to appoint officers-in-charge (from the police cadre) in police stations. The ACC believes that this will reduce corruption by 50%.
The ACC chairman further said that there is no doubt that corruption exists from grassroots to the higher level, which is why a concerted effort is needed to prevent corruption.
According to the 2019 annual report, the ACC received a total of 21,371 complaints, 1,710 of which were investigated. Also, in 2019, there were 263 cases and 267 charge-sheets, with a conviction rate of 63%.
Iqbal Mahmood said that the numbers of cases and charge-sheets in 2019 had increased from the previous year.
"ACC's case conviction rate has increased to 63% percent due to the hard work we've done to ensure the quality of cases and charge-sheets. However, we want the conviction rate to be 100%," he said.
But the good news is that, as current records indicate, the conviction rate in commission cases has increased to 77% in 2020.
ACC Commissioner Dr Md Mozammel Haque Khan said the commission has been implementing an anti-corruption strategy in the past few years, mainly through administrative reforms.
It is easy to prevent corruption by deploying administrative strategies, he added.
ACC Commissioner AFM Aminul said, "We have been working relentlessly to review the investigation documents of cases."
At the end of the meeting, the ACC chairman and two commissioners also had discussions with new committee members of Reporters Against Corruption (RAC), an organisation of journalists working with the ACC beat.
ACC Secretary Anwar Hossain Hawldar, RAC President Mohiuddin Ahmed and General Secretary Ahmed Fayez also spoke on the occasion.