Democratic Party’s leader and Hillary Clinton has once again teamed-up with a number of individuals in saving Mohammad Yunus, a controversial individual who has been fooling the world with the bogus success story of his microcredit project thus making hundreds of millions of dollars and secretly shifting most of these funds into his secret bank accounts abroad.
According to a website opened by Mohammad Yunus, a number of individuals namely Bono, Musician and Activist; Sir Richard Branson, Founder, Virgin Group; Lord Mark Malloch Brown, President, Open Society Foundations [an organization funded by George Soros]; Hillary Rodham Clinton [Hillary Clinton], Former US Secretary of State; Sam Daley-Harris, Founder, RESULTS and Civic Courage; Lt. Gen. (Rtd.) Romeo Dallaire, Founder, Dallaire Institute for Children, Peace and Security; Marian Wright Edelman, Founder and President Emerita, Children’s Defense Fund; Vicente Fox, Former President of Mexico; Peter Gabriel, Musician; Ron Garan, Former NASA Astronaut; Kul Gautam, Former Deputy Executive Director of UNICEF and Assistant Secretary General of the UN; Pamela Gillies, Former Vice Chancellor and Professor Emerita, Glasgow Caledonian University; Peter C. Goldmark, Jr., Former CEO, Rockefeller Foundation and International Herald Tribune; Jane Goodall, Primatologist and Activist; Al Gore, Former Vice President of the United States; John Hewko, CEO, Rotary International; Mo Ibrahim, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist; Baroness Helena Kennedy, KC Member of the House of Lords UK; Kerry Kennedy, President, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights; Ted Kennedy Jr; Vinod Khosla, Venture Capitalist; Ban Ki-moon, 8th Secretary General of the UN; Annie Lennox, Singer, Songwriter, and Activist; Arthur Levitt, Former Chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commission; Gene Ludwig, Founder and CEO, Springharbor Holdings & Former US Comptroller of the Currency; Paul Maritz, Former CEO of VMWare; Michael H. Moskow, Former President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago; Narayana Murthy, Founder, Infosys; Sir Robin Niblett, Former Chief Executive, Chatham House; Jan Piercy, Advisor, Southern Bancorporation, Former US Board Director, World Bank; Robert Post, Sterling Professor of Law, Yale Law School; Senator Donald Riegle, Former US Senator from Michigan, Former Chairman, Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Development; Mary Robinson, Former President of Ireland; Ellen Seidman; Yeardley Smith, Actress; Sharon Stone, Mother; Dr. David Suzuki, Prof. Emeritus, University of British Columbia; Peter Tufano, Former Dean, Saïd School of Business, Oxford University; Melanne Verveer, Former US Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues; and Jimmy Wales, Founder, Wikipedia have written a letter to Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina stating: “Professor Yunus is one of seven people in history to have received the Nobel Peace Prize, the US Presidential medal of Freedom, and the US Congressional Gold Medal, a group that includes Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Theresa, and Elie Wiesel”.
It said, “He [Yunus] founded Grameen Bank in 1976 and grew it to a world-renowned poverty-fighting institution of 9 million borrowers, 97 percent of them women, that has lifted millions out of poverty and been a model for other microcredit programs around the world.
Yunus wants to be Bangladesh’s next Prime Minister
The above letter has been sent days after Muhammad Yunus held a long telephonic discussion with Tarique Rahman, Acting Chairman of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) where Tarique and other leaders of the party have agreed to elect Yunus as Bangladesh’s president once BNP comes to power in 2024, although Yunus wants to be the Prime Minister in BNP’s government as the party is currently unable to field Tarique Rahman or Khaleda Zia as the candidate. Yunus has reportedly pledged to get international support in favor of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), once the party will announce him as its prime minister in the next government. Meanwhile, an editor of Dhaka’s leading English-language newspaper reportedly is coordinating media publicity on behalf of Yunus.
Most interestingly, while Mohammed Yunus hired Jennifer Lopez in June 2022 as “brand ambassador” of ‘Grameen America’, she did not sign the above-mentioned letter.
Exposing a notorious Mohammad Yunus
On March 9, 2011, Rajeev Sharma, a New Delhi-based journalist-author and a strategic analyst, in an article titled ‘The Fall of Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus’ wrote:
The euphoria generated by the media after Yunus won the Nobel Prize got dissipated following reports appearing in a section of press highlighting high interest rates charged by the Grameen Bank, tough payment schedules and inhuman recovery methods leading to miseries including suicides committed by the poor loan defaulters.
The international community has long been made to believe that Yunus was lending money to rural poor people in Bangladesh, especially women, at a very comfortable and low interest. In fact, Grameen Bank has been receiving grants and loans from various international agencies on a regular basis for this purpose. The highest amount of annual interest on any foreign loan that Grameen Bank receives is 3 percent. Moreover, a major segment of the foreign loans or grants received by it are absolutely free of interest. But, Yunus is lending money to poor people at a rate ranging between 40-70 percent per year. Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has already termed Yunus as ‘bloodsucker of the poor’.
This bloodsucking show was revealed when the ’Weekly Blitz’, published a series of investigative reports on Yunus. A reporter Zahid Al Amin of the weekly visited the village Jobra near Chittagong. Jobra is claimed to be the model of ‘success story’ of Yunus and his Grameen Bank. He interacted with the villagers and collected information as well photographs, to verify the truth in what Yunus and his Grameen Bank were claiming as their success.
Yunus displayed a documentary on a woman’s fortune at the Nobel Prize awarding ceremony in Oslo, Norway, on October 13, 2006, putting up the success story of Grameen Bank. The documentary mainly focused on the first borrower of Grameen Bank, Sufia, showing her as owning a two storey building after rising from a miserable condition.
Though Yunus and Grameen Bank claimed to have helped Sufia in erecting her own building, in reality, she used to live in an almost broken hut, where her family members are living even now. The house, which is shown by Yunus and Grameen Bank as Sufia’s in the documentary is actually owned by one Jabel Hussain who lives in Dubai. The owner Jabel Hussain has, from Dubai, instructed his relatives in Bangladesh to sue Yunus and Grameen bank if his two storey house is again shown as Sufia’s in future. There had never been any response or comment or statement from Yunus and his Grameen Bank though the widely read ‘Weekly Blitz’ published series of reports about Sufia and ownership of the two storey house.
Nurunnahar, the youngest daughter of Sufia, told the media in 2010 that though Yunus earned name and fame worldwide, her mother being the first borrower of his micro-credit scheme could not change her life and had to lead a miserable life. She said her mother took loan to start a cane business but found her trapped in a vicious circle of loan and interest. Later, she was compelled to take loan from different sources to repay Grameen Bank.
Investigative and award-winning Danish documentary film maker Tom Heinemann’s documentary titled “Caught in Micro debt’ released in last November also dug out the harsh reality Sufia met. Sufia’s daughters Halima and Nurunnahar said that they were left absolutely pauper and have to beg for survival. On investigation, it was found that when Sufia died due to extreme poverty the local people had to collect donations for her burial.
The story of Sufia reads like this. Yunus gave TK. 20 to Sufia Begum of Jobra village years back as loan with the condition of returning in time with interest. Sufia returned that money and got second loan of Tk. 500 from Yunus. She was so excited that she spread the news in the entire village.
This was the beginning of Grammen Bank concept. But, most of the borrowers, who took money from Yunus, gradually turned from poor to poorest as they were compelled to pay regular interests at high rate. In Jobra village alone, a large number of villagers have already been turned into paupers by Yunus and his Grameen Bank.
Yunus and his Grameen Bank projected Jobra village and Sufia as example of their excellent success stories to the international audience. Through such campaign, Yunus has attained tremendous attention of the international community. He has gained fame in the world as ‘pioneer’ of micro credit, for which he got Nobel Peace prize in 2006. The name of Sufia, the first borrower of loan from Yunus’s Grameen Bank, has already crossed international boundaries of many countries, as Grameen Bank proudly pronounced her name as one of the brilliant success stories of their socalled micro-credit loans. It is beyond knowledge of many that, almost one decade back, Sufia died due to extreme poverty and lack of any minimum medical treatment.
Due to continuous publication of reports in our newspaper – Blitz about Dr. Mohammad Yunus, we were contacted by many including Tom Heinemann, who made the latest documentary on Yunus and his Grameen Bank.
On December 6, 2010, Parminder Bahra in an article in The Wall Street Journal wrote:
… In 1996, the Norwegians had concerns about Yunus’ handling of the aid money and wrote to him for an explanation. Yunus turned to the then director general of Norad, Ms. Tove Strand Gerhardesn, and practically begged for her help to assuage an increasingly unhappy Norweigian Embassy in Bangladesh:
Hardly the sort of letter one would write over a ‘simple’ misunderstanding. The matter did not come to light until last week.
Following the broadcast of the documentary, the story has been picked up across Scandanavia and the issue has been raised in the Norwegian parliament.
The current Norwegian International Development Minister, Erik Solheim, has called for a full report on the matter. In a statement to the BBC he said:
It is also likely that the Bangladeshi Government will investigate the matter.
There are many outstanding questions that these investigations must report:
how was the matter left between Norad and Grameen Bank
how much of the aid money was used for home loans
once the loans were repaid, how much of that money was put back into home loans (the aid was meant to be used as revolving loans)
what procedures did Norad put in place to evaluate the use and effectiveness of the aid
why did Norad let money that was explicitly for home loans be used for profit-making ventures within the broader Grameen group?
This news comes at a time when microfinance, after a decade of rapid expansion, is facing a backlash. In the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, microfinance loans have been blamed for suicides in the state as customers who fall behind on payments are threatened. Local politicians are seeking legislation to curb interest rates and bank practises.
There is increasing evidence that microfinance is causing over indebtedness and there are serious concerns that the sector is experiencing an asset bubble which is ready to burst.
There has been a collective delusion that microfinance and its link to entrepreneurial activity is a powerful tool to alleviate poverty despite little evidence to show that this model works. The research shows that borrowers do not see significant increases in income. In many instances, people are using the loans for consumption-smoothing rather than entrepreneurial activities. As they fall into debt, they take out more loans to pay back earlier ones and a vicious cycle begins.
But governments, multilateral organisations, philanthropic organisations, corporate retail banks, non-governmental organisations and charities continue to pour billions of dollars into microfinance enterprises.
Yet most of the people who have entered into contracts with the microfinance sector see little change.
Yunus, a bloodsucking monster
The bloodsucking show of Dr Muhammad Yunus was exposed by BLiTZ in 2011 through a number of investigative reports. Prior to publication of the reports, our reporters were sent to Jobra village in Chattogram, which was claimed to be the model “success story” of Yunus and his Grameen Bank. Our reporters interacted with the villagers and collected information as well as photographs, to expose the lies of Yunus.
It may be mentioned here that, Mohammad Yunus projected a documentary film on woman’s fortune at the Nobel Prize awarding ceremony in Oslo, Norway on October 13, 2006, through which he had falsely claimed his success story. The documentary mainly focused on the first borrower of Grameen Bank, Sufia Begum [also spelled as Sufiya Begum], showing her as owning a two-storey building after rising from miserable condition.
But in reality, BLiTZ reports had exposed the real condition of Sufia Begum. Although Yunus and Grameen Bank claimed to have helped her in erecting her own building, in reality, she was living in dire economic condition in an almost broken hut, with other members of her family. The building which Yunus and Grameen Bank was showing as Sufia’s in their documentary films was actually owned by an individual named Jabel Hussain, an expatriate Bangladeshi in Dubai.
The owner Jabel Hussain had, from Dubai, instructed his relatives in Bangladesh to sue Yunus and Grameen Bank if his two-storey house is again shown as Sufia’s in future. There had never been any response or comment or statement from Yunus and his Grameen Bank though the BLiTZ report was read by hundreds and thousands of people from around the world.
Furthermore, Nurun Nahar, the youngest daughter of Sufia Begum told Blitz reporters that though Mohammad Yunus earned name, fame and even Nobel Prize, her mother being the first borrower of microcredit scheme could not change her life and had to lead a miserable life. She said, Sufia Begum took loan to start a cane business but found her trapped in a vicious circle of loan and interest. Later, she was compelled to take loan from different sources to repay Grameen Bank.
Sufia’s daughters Halima and Nurunnahar said that they were left absolutely pauper and have to beg for survival. On investigation, it was found that when Sufia died due to extreme poverty the local people had to collect donations for her burial.
The story of Sufia reads like this. Yunus gave TK. 20 [US$ 0.25] to Sufia Begum of Jobra village years back as loan with the condition of returning in time with interest. Sufia returned that money and got second loan of Tk. 500 [US$ 5.80] from Yunus. She was so excited that she spread the news in the entire village. This was the beginning of Grameen Bank concept. But, most of the borrowers, who took money from Yunus, gradually turned from poor to poorest as they were compelled to pay regular interests at high rate. In Jobra village alone, a large number of villagers have already been turned into paupers by Yunus and his Grameen Bank.
It may be mentioned here that, at personal efforts of Bill and Hillary Clinton, bloodsucker Yunus was given highest civilian medal in the US by President Barack Obama. And now, possibly Clintons are extending special favor from behind the curtain to their “loving Yunus”.
BLiTZ also reported that Yunus took former US first lady Hillary Clinton at Grameen Bank’s project situated at Rishi Palli at Moshihati in Bangladesh, where Yunus initiated a project named ‘Hillary Adarsha’ (Hillary Model) and started distributing loans to the locals.
Although Hillary Clinton was deeply impressed and given assurance of providing soft-term loan to the poor villagers, in reality, the villagers were made to pay 30~40 percent interest. After the visit of Hillary Clinton, the entire village turned into a land of horror. Extreme poverty due to high interest charged by the Grameen Bank pushed them towards starvation, poverty and compelling many of them to commit suicide. Child marriage is very common in that village. A large number of females from the village ended up in local and neighboring brothels, as they were virtually sold by parents due to poverty. Now, Hillary Model village has turned into a big joke to the locals. But Yunus was successful in tactfully suppressing this fact from the attention of Hillary Clinton and the international media.
Although Hillary Clinton and her husband Bill Clinton are heavily biased towards Muhammad Yunus and they may not investigate the afore-mentioned crimes committed by this nefarious man for reasons unknown, can we hope those who have signed the letter to Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will at least look into these allegations? Can investigation journalists in the world investigate fraudulent activities of Muhammad Yunus?
It may be mentioned here that, Yunus-controlled organizations have officially donated between US$125,000 and US$300,000 to the Clinton Foundation. We shall never know how much Yunus has paid to Clinton family in exchange of favor he has been receiving from this couple.
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