Bangladesh’s beleaguered central bank chief resigned Tuesday and two of his deputies were sacked after hackers stole over US$ 100 million from the nation’s foreign reserves in one of the world’s biggest ever bank theft that embarrassed the government.
Governor of Bangladesh Bank Atiur Rahman, 64, resigned after a meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
"He (Rahman) has tendered his resignation to the Prime Minister," Premier’s office spokesman Ihsanul Karim said.
Karim said Rahman called on Hasina at her office and handed over his resignation, seven years after he was appointed Governor.
Karim later told a media briefing that Hasina appreciated Rahman’s contribution to the national economy while accepting his resignation.
It is a bold decision and "it will remain a rare example of moral strength and courage", Hasina said, according to Karim.
Karim said the premier simultaneously ordered actions against Bangladesh Bank officials concerned, responsible for the heist.
Earlier, Rahman, holding back tears, told reporters that he was ready to quit for the sake of the country.
"This event was almost like a militant attack, almost like an earthquake. I did not realise how it happened, from where it originated and who had done it," he said.
"When I was informed I was so puzzled. Fearing that it might destroy our economy, I quickly took opinion of the experts. I brought them to the country from abroad and ensured security so that it did not occur again."
Rahman said he quit voluntarily as "I do not want my institution and my country facing any controversy over the fund heist issue…I think my resignation will help restoring our image".