Turkish NGO rejects donation by ex-central bank head

Published April 15th, 2001 - 02:00 GMT

A Turkish non-governmental group said Friday, April 13, it had refused to accept a "dirty money" donation by former central bank chief Gazi Ercel of profits he reaped from a disputed deal. "We have instructed our bank to immediately return the money," the Association for the Support of Contemporary Life (CYDD) said in a statement, carried by Anatolia news agency. 

 

The donation was "dirty money", which it could never accept, the association said. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit approved Thursday an investigation into allegations that Ercel abused his position to profit from last month's economic crisis, which forced Turkey to float the lira. 

 

The probe followed press reports that Ercel converted holdings of Turkish lira into dollars just before Ankara floated the currency on February 22, causing it to drop more than 40 percent against the dollar. He allegedly made an 80-percent profit in 45 days. 

 

Ercel, who resigned in February after the financial turmoil, denied any wrongdoing and donated the profits from the transaction to the CYDD. He did not disclose the sum. The former central bank chief said in a newspaper interview published Wednesday that the currency dealings were carried out by friends without his knowledge. 

 

After the CYDD refused his donation, another civic organization immediately volunteered to accept it. The Association for the Protection of Nature and Animals, based in the southern city of Adana, said it was ready to use the money in a campaign to save stray dogs and cats. —(AFP)  

 

© Agence France Presse 2001 

 

© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)

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