Recalling memories of GATJ: To Our Young Friends
Rezaul Karim Chowdhury
Dhaka 5 February 2021:
Today I feel proud as I was part of Global Alliance of Tax Justice (GATJ). I was there as I have joined and grown with as a local NGO person. If I was doing a job in donors or an INGO I could not feel it, I could not be part of GATJ. I was so lucky and so fortunate and so feel dignified that I am part of a local NGOs. But I have taken it differently and grown it differently, from right based civil society perspective, building movements local to international. I have been facilitated by a lot of international organizations or actors, but they did it as I stand with my own feet and with self-esteem first for foremost and want to be like that until I live, me and our organization wanted to be self-defended always.
Norwegian MPs proposed, GATJ has nominated for Nobel Prize this year. GATJ raising voice against illicit flow / capital transfer, regressive tax, tax or redistributive justice. I was part of first international committee until 2018 and Asian / TAFJA committee until 2019.
Our struggle will continue, as we pay $ 9 as illicit flow / capital transfer while we receive only $ 1 as aid. I will urge our friends Bangladeshi youths to take this path of struggle, knowledge based movement, connecting local, national and internationals, not to go behind for money in a international organization, do not be domesticated yourself as subservient in the NGOs, most of those rear aid colonialism and racism.
Especially I will urge my native Coxsbazarian youths do not be confused with your present high salary job, may be it is personally benefiting you but it is in fact distracting you from practical general life, from your own local society and all above de-politicizing you from building local civil society movement for human rights, democracy, equity and justice.
Take the future in your grip, future is for democracy, human rights, equity and justice, start with local activism with self-esteem. If you do not, who will start it. It is challenging as well as rewarding, another world is possible. Perspective of movement building have changed, it is not only limited with political parties, civil society is the most powerful force in whole over the world. Even if you are not part of an organization, but you have information commination technology in your hand. As an individual you can mobilize others.
Thanks to Awal Bhai, Monowar Bhai, Swapan Bhai, Badrul Bhai, Sabri Bhai, Kamal, Babor and Rumee, who have leaded tax justice movement in Bangladesh, hope that our journey will be rejuvenated. Salute to our comrade Lidy Nacpil in APMDD Philippines, our mentor.