In an unprecedented speech the President of UNDP/UNFPA/UNOPS Staff Council, Mr. Dimitri Samaras, laid down on January 31 2008- a completely different picture of what's going on inside UNDP.
Samaras words were so hard on Dervis that on his way out of the meeting, whispering to his "close" advisers, Kemal characterized it as an: -"unexpected hit below the belt".
In his speech during the Staff Global gathering, Samaras demanded from leadership some tough answers, about UNDP life.
Following are some of the passages of his speech:
On Security of UNDP Staff
- " Appeal to you to double your efforts to implement all measures, policies and strategies in order to make our organization a safer place and respond to our call for Zero tolerance pertaining to the violation of Staff Safety and Security"
On Transparency and Reform
- " UNDP staff are losing their sense of belonging and faith in UNDP"
- " Staff are improperly and unfairly managed and changes in Staff Management are necessary"
- " Staff expectations and concerns are neither addressed nor implemented"
- " Leadership uses inappropriately strategic placement/hiring (like Eveline Herfkens, etc);
- " dealing with problems post-factum (in a damage-control formula) shows lack of leadership and vision"
- " UNDP lacks of a system of justice to provide support and/or relief for staff grievances"
- " leadership has transformed UNDP from a merit-driven-organization to a "networking"-driven. Where staff has to kiss-... to get promoted"
- "managers operate out of given guidelines at all levels.....and instead of being held responsible they continue to act with impunity"
- "service contract and SSA holders continue to perform CORE functions"
Samaras also raised the issue of UNDP's Leadership claiming out-of-jurisdiction of UN Secretariat on Ethics and Ombudsman. He stated that:-"a separate Ombudsperson's office located in UNDP, loosely affiliated with the UN Secretariat, would hamper the General Assembly's initiative for a more fair and transparent system of justice".
Samaras also stressed that:-"a fragmented Ombudsperson's system similarly to the system of Ethics Office would not be in the interest of UNDP Staff" and that he would be "approaching the Secretary General Ban Ki Moon on this matter".
Today's address was a total blow to Dervis and Melkert pseudo-leadership and delivered a straight-forward message that the Staff Council will not bend to latest intimidation attempts from UNDP Management.
On the way out, many staff were congratulating Samaras for his strength and courage to stand in front of the leadership, while others smiling were reminding him of : - "when will his picture will be next in UNDP Watch or Innercity Press as a victim" or "when he will be the next whistleblower".
Samaras speech was delivered this afternoon to all mailboxes of UN Member States, including all major media acredited to the UN, by UNDP Watch volunteers.