Bifani Submits Resignation: I refuse to be witness to collapse
29 Jun 2020
Lebanon - Lebanon's Ministry of Finance's General Director, Alain Bifani, on Monday announced his official resignation from a post he has held for over two decades.
In a press conference he held afterwards, Bifani made clear that he had chosen to resign because he utterly refused to be a partner or witness to the nation's economic collapse.
"Everyone is called forth to come forward with a clear stance; this is my stance -- after having exhausted every possible effort to save what could've been salvaged," said Bifani.
Moreover, he lauded the Diab-led cabinet's economic rapprochement deeming it "a precise evaluation" of the situation.
"It has been unanimously approved and welcomed by financial institutions, especially vis-a-vis Lebanon's seriousness in approaching outstanding financial matters," Bifani added, noting that the plan addressed the need to recover all the looted funds and highlighted the paramount importance of adopting a comprehensive reform of the existing system.
"It appears that the ruling regime has used various methods and attempts to strike the government's plan; they portrayed us as corrupt, however, the judiciary will have the final say regarding such cheap accusations," he added.
Moreover, Bifani regretted that the ongoing state of denial, procrastination, treasonous campaigns, and failure to implement the required reforms "all served those who benefited from the existing system in a way that weakens Lebanon's ability to negotiate with international bodies."
He went on to say that it was high time those in charge listened to the voice of the people, "especially now that it has become evidently clear that Lebanon will not get any form of foreign support at the absence of major reforms."
In further details, Bifani said that the value of deposits that had been wired out of Lebanese banks were estimated at $17.3 billion, adding that the net losses are estimated at $61 billion.
"They refuse to have 'their' profits be tampered with or affected; they'd rather have people pay the price from their own deposits instead of returning a part of their profits from banks abroad," Bifani said in regret.
Furthermore, he explained that the Lebanese were subjected to haircuts as a result of failure to implement the government's plan -- and not the other way around.
"The only party responsible for the people's lost deposits is the bank. Whatever the bank has done with the depositors' funds is not the depositors' problem," he added.