Ukhiya, Bangladesh: The Kutupalong makeshift camp committee members have be extorting money from the refugees since the members took the position, said a refugee from the Kutuplaong makeshift camp.
“The makeshift camp has more than 40,000 refugees living in the miserable conditions – small huts with plastics and bushes, no food, no health and no education – and to maintain the camp, the refugees have rights to choose the committee member.”
This year the new committee - extorting and harassing the refugee- are not chose by the refugee, but, the committee members themselves managed to get the position paying money to concerned authority, said a religious leader from the camp. “It look like Burma to get the position of village chairmen (Now village administration officer) after giving money to concerned authority.”
“They camp committee used more than 100,000 taka to get the position, but no proof about this.”
“They extort money from the refugees to solve any problem which is happened among the refugees in the camp,” said a female refugee, who is the victim of the committee.
“The committee asked me to pay 3000 Taka while I quarreled with my neighbor about the children matter. If, I refused to pay them, they told me they will send me to the police with a false case.”
Abu Siddique, the chairman of Kutupalong makeshift, the camp secretary Raki Ullah and other members are extorting money from the innocent refugees and also harassing them in the Kutupalong makeshift camp, said another refugee on condition of anonymity.
“The committee started to extorted money from every corner of camp where they see to get money- social, education (religious and modern), family matter, shops and working outside the camp- and harassments on the refugee.”
“We want our children to get the education, but the new committee tried to destroy the education in the camp. The most refugees requested to the concerned person to keep the education program,” said an elder and well-wisher of camp.
“Raki Ullah, the camp secretary was leading the committee activity and asked money from refugees to run the education program and distributed the teachers for money.”
According to refugees, “We don’t want the present committee members because of their criminal activity, but we want the persons who give us justly and understand the life of refugee in the makeshift camp.”