BEIRUT — Several private citizens have launched an online petition asking Banque du Liban's acting governor and deputy governors give all the data and information requested, but not obtained, by audit firm Alvarez & Marsal from BDL to "supervisory authorities."
“In compliance with the law, under the right of access to information and the principle of transparency, the Central Bank of Lebanon is required to hand over all data and information that were requested and not obtained by the auditing company, to the relevant supervisory — parliamentary, judicial, and administrative — authorities,” the petition says.
“Consequently, we hereby call on the acting governor of the central bank of Lebanon and the deputy governors, to release all the required documents and data,” the text adds, saying “We also call on Members of Parliament and competent judges to carry out their duties to restore the financial rights of the people in making accountable the people responsible for these and any other violations.”
In its introduction, the text quoted A&M's report, and denounced the fact that it “revealed a failure of governance, waste, and pillage organized through the Central Bank of Lebanon, worth LL115 trillion, or $76 billion at the time.”
“Similarly, the report establishes that the Central Bank of Lebanon’s losses in foreign currencies amounted to $71.9 billion at the end of 2020, contrary to the assertions of many officials and others at the time, and that these losses have currently exceeded $77 billion, which is roughly equivalent to the overall cost of financial engineering established by the report,” the petition explained.
“If the facts are not revealed in full, with names and figures, we will remain captive to sterile and biased political slogans and interpretations. The fully established truth, in names and figures, is indeed the key to justice. And justice shall be done,” the petition concluded.
The Lebanese judiciary is questioning Riad Salameh, the head of BDL for 3o years, part of an investigation into “forgery, money laundering, illicit enrichment and tax evasion.”
Several European countries are investigating Salameh on allegations of investing illegally attained funds in their territories. The former BDL chief denies all charges.