BRA Deal - Muhammad Ali Salaam

Muhammad Ali Salaam

Ali Salaam is the Deputy Director of the BRA and a leader at the ISB. He directly oversaw the deal between the BRA and the ISB and had completely merged his roles as BRA official and ISB leader. There is a clear conflict of interest stemming from the involvement of Muhammad Ali Salaam in the land deal as both the person at BRA in charge of the deal and as a leader in the ISB.

  • In a February 26, 1999 confidential memorandum, Ali Salaam advises the ISB Board on how to obtain favorable terms from the BRA. Although he is a city employee, Ali Salaam refers to the City of Boston as ‘they’ and to the ISB as ‘we.’
  • In a May 5, 1999 letter written on BRA stationery, Ali Salaam negotiates for a lower price for the ISB from a contractor.
  • In the winter of 1999 – 2000, Ali Salaam took part in an ISB fundraising trip to the Middle East to fundraise for the mosque project. ISB Trustees formally requested Ali Salaam’s presence on the trip in his capacity as a BRA official from BRA Director Paul McCann, promising to reimburse the BRA for Ali Salaam’s travel costs. An ISB newsletter from February 2000 describes the role Ali Salaam played on the trip:

“Dr. Walid Fitaihi, Dr. Osama Kandil, Dr. Muhammad Amr, Dr. Sami Angawi and Br. Muhammad Ali Salaam worked hard during Ramadan to solicit funds from overseas. Dr. Walid and Sami took on Saudi. Dr. Muhammad Amr and Muhammad Ali Salaam took on other Gulf states.”

  • On December 9, 2000, ISB leaders and Ali Salaam wrote a letter to Roxbury Community College President Grace Brown. The letter was written on BRA stationery and signed by Ali Salaam, ISB Executive Director Yousef Abou-Allaban, and Treasurer Walid Fitaihi. The letter presents the RCC with a $10,000 donation check and asks that its source remain anonymous.
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