Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The White Africans who keep UNDP secure: 11 million US$ spent to have our brothers and sisters killed in Algeria

(names are withheld from fear of direct retaliation from Kemal Dervis and Ad Melkert)

from: ..........................,
date: Dec 31, 2007
subject: [UNDP WATCH] New comment on How democratic are the institutions upon which we ....

I thought I would give your publication the first opportunity, as the target audience is the most appropriate.

HQ in Algeria was blown up, with 13 dead, Now for Damage Control ... or fixing the blame
The UN HQ in Algeria was blown up, with 13 dead, the irony of this is that there is a budget to implement security, create stand offs to harden the targets but it was all ignored there was even an extra budget called MOSS/TARR to implement additional security measures besides the normal yearly budget and all went to waste no one did anything money disappeared and now who pays for the loss of 13 lives due to the security at the Office in Algeria. Someone needs to be held to account for that and the sooner the better. How much is the value of one life saved and how much more can be done at the international level in fulfilling UN mandate when corruption is rooted out.

But in the aftermath, most of those dead were SSAs (contractors), so UNDP don't care much, and doesn't even cover them under any form of insurance and or protection schemes. In fact UNDP's Ad Melkert has signed a deal with an Insurance Company which do not cover the "terrorist acts", so who is going to pay for our brothers and sisters who lost their lives ? Now Ad Melkert is giving orders to Akiko Yuge and Darshak Shah to find a way to pay somehow from other funds. While the Insurance Company is preparing to hike the prices - given the Algeria events.

Al Qaida took responsibility for the bombing but this begs the question as who is really at fault, and who will be the fall guy or guys and gals. It is easy to give credit or take credit; it is more difficult to fix blame where it really belongs. It is almost impossible, based on the sorted track record of the UN to accept their mistakes and take appropriate action to keep their house in order. The UN is more into damage control than to solving problems. Part of the problem is connected to networks of patronage and good old boy connections. Now it is time to looking for a fall guy. This is not the first time and unless there is organizational chance, such things can happen again and again.

It is clear from well placed sources at HQ they are looking for a fall guy for all the dead in Algeria even with all the money gone they are lining their pockets and it is very sophisticated in how they are doing it but the budget was there and they took the money and people died because of it a bit on criminal side due to the body count.

The South African Mafia inside UNDP

We all know the UN system is replete with mafia from various nationalities. However within the small office that provides for the security of UNDP the South African Mafia has become so well entrenched that even if you lack the basic qualifications you can land yourself a nice L-4 post and make yourself a home if you know the right people and of course come from the right country (and know who to show your appreciate to, and how the payment system works). Below that comes a thriving level of intermediaries.

Let us talk specifics, at least what can be easily verified. Certainly this mess and total cock-up must have been allowed to exist with the full knowledge of senior management, if not ... then let the reader be the judge.

Mr. Leon Terblanche

The former, recently de-throned P-5 Chief of the UNDP Security Unit was a South African with dual nationality in Canada. Mr. T managed to institutionalize himself as the Security Chief for several years even though he lacked any real security background. Mr. T. was a former South African military officer working in the engineers with military explosives and de-mining. He worked on several de-mining projects prior to getting the security post with the support of his friend ms. Janie McClusker of UNFPA.

Mr. T. was replaced only this past year after failing to compete for his own post, failing also in his diligent effort to re-align the post to a D1 ranking. His one success as Chief was to successful dis-enfranchise the Security Unit from all of the other business units where he was seen by many as the ultimate dis-enabler for UNDP by how he managed the security office. Only when truly qualified candidates were allowed to apply, and following years of his poor management was he finally removed only to be exiled as the UN Security Officer for all of the UN in Belgrade, Yugoslavia.

Jan A.B. (JAB)Swart

A engineer of Mr. Terblanche, Mr. Swart managed to have his close friend;s create and hire him into the UNDP Security Unit. Again Mr. S. possessed no security background but was given a comfortable P-4 post. One hand washes the other, as Mr. S. had previously given Mr. T. a post when working as a project manager with UNOPS, and so Mr. Swart assumed his P4 post. In Mr. T’s effort to re-align his post as a D1, he moved his friend Mr. S into an unofficial post as Deputy Security Chief and proposed that while he was made a D1 that Mr. S be made a P-5 in the process.

Mr. T. went so far as to have Mr. S. drafted his own individual new and approved Terms of Reference, TOR, as Deputy Chief. But with the failure of Mr. T. to realize his dream of D1, Mr. S. re-thought and did not press for his post to be re-aligned. Once the realization of his dismal failures became evident Mr. T. formally wrote to his friend JAB as his Deputy Security Chief and in spite of the fact that the post is entirely fictitious but anyway, he was now, appointed him in his stead as he prepared for his demoted repositioning to Belgrade. There is a story within a story here to be told.

Ah, it is indeed good to be King.

As Deputy Security Chief

Mr. S. manages, if what he does can truly be called management, the important MOSS supports funds for UNDP. Where have all the millions of dollars gone (over $11,000,000 so far) when our friends in Algeria worked from a non-compliant office and paid the ultimate price. Did Mr. S. do anything to ensure that adequate measures were in place? Did he authorize the finances to make the necessary changes? What about the other offices around the world? It is a lot of money Mr. S. how did you spend it? Did your good friend in Moldovia get his piece whilst Algeria sat at risk?

Carla Naude.

Ms. Naude, is perhaps the best qualified of the South African Mafia although her portfolio is focused that of premises security. Ms. Mafiosa sits in a nice P4 post having no previous UN experience no field security experience and now finds herself responsible for covering Mr. S. as he tries to dodge the bullets for Algeria and the $11,000,000 of funds spent so far to ensure security compliance for our offices worldwide. The question becomes Will she do it? and what does she owe Mr. S. or his predecessor?

Mr. Scotty Saunders.

Another friend of Mr. T. and Mr. S. This South African is the arrogant and undermining Senior Field Security Advisor for Iraq and as usual for the South African Mafia does not possess the required education or background to achieve such an important and well positioned post. He also serves as a nice L4. Maybe his on-line effort to gain the education he lacks will qualify him for a comfortable P5 or D1 in the future.

Mr. Johannes Vandermervwe.

Mr. V not surprisingly comes from UNOPS where he worked on de-mining programmes. Having no security background apart from his years in the South African military as an engineer (certainly no pattern) it is understandable that he was the perfect selection for the coveted UNDP Regional Security Officer posted in Bangkok.
Mr. Vandermerve, With his wife having to depart her high-level job at UNOPS, where Mr.'s T., S. and V. worked on de-mining programmes together allowed Mr.'s S. and T. to repay Mr. and Ms. Vandermerve by not only selecting Mr. V for the Bangkok post but moreover lobbying for a raise from the normal basic pay for a new L4 and made sure that Mr. V was provided with a full 200 series contact with all of the benefits. This would not seem unusual until you realize that serving security staff in similar positions in the Arab States and African regions were not also provided the same level of contract and had to fight hard almost to the point of contract expiration to gain parity with Mr. V. It was certainly no problem for Mr.'s Terblanche and Swart to get their good friend and co-mafioso in with a nice raise and benefits above the non-South African's in the same positions.

Mr. Johann Poltgieter.

Mr. P., another friend of Mr. Swart has managed to get posted as the Field Security Officer, L3 to UNDP in Israel the West Bank and Gaza, hired through the P.A.P.P. office. Of course it was nice that for this particular recruitment that the UNDP Security Office was not managing the recruitment like before and only guided the selection process since Mr. P. apparently was unsuccessful in several attempts to secure similar posts in UNDP elsewhere due to his lack of experience and failure in the interviews process. Possibly with guidance on how to answer the questions and how to address the questioning of the interview panel from Mr. Swart, and perhaps with even a little added influence as Mr. Swart repositioned the former Advisor for P.A.P.P. to Somalia, from L-3 to L-4, the new post for Mr. Poltgieter was realized.

So it is clear. Of six South Africans in the UNDP Security Office none have had the required security background training or experience that is normally required for these posts. The one at the top of the pile has been removed only to another security post outside of UNDP. The second in the line of succession remains in a fictitious unofficial post placing many of us at risk on a daily basis hoping for his coveted P-5 to materialize. The rest of the South African mafia remains in their posts quietly hoping for Mr. Swart to get promoted and continue the patronage process.

Mr. Swart as the Deputy Chief is responsible for all 'Field Support’, which includes supporting the Regional Security Officers and security support to our country offices. Mr. S. even as a fictitious Deputy Chief has also apparently been granted rights to receive all of the risk reports from the department of safety and security.

It would not take too much research to prove that Mr. Swart must have received the reports that indicated there was a threat against our colleague's offices in Algeria. Did his Regional Security Officer give Mr.Swart any indicators of the risk? With millions of dollars at his fingertips why didn't Mr. Swart use any to help Algeria prepare? Maybe something could have been done. Maybe someone should look at this. But that would mean that UNDP would really be trying to address the failures of Mr. T. and Mr. S. Maybe fewer of our friends in Algeria would have died, or none at all.

Over $11,000,000 has been spent to protect us but still the Algeria tragedy occurs. Everyone seems to get a piece of this pie but where was poor Algeria? Who is next?

It is comforting for the rest of us to now that UN reform and management in UNDP recognizes the value of retaining these uniquely qualified and well-positioned staff who are fully aware of the value of properly addressing national balance after all South Africa is from the South in terms of North & South balance. And of course we can all feel comfortable knowing that the Human Resources effort to place the right people in the right places” includes selecting and assigning non-qualified un-trained and in-experienced managers and security officers to positions where they can provide for UN security and protection.

COMMENTS: The White Africans who secure UNDP are spreading


Mr. Devis, Mr. Melkert and Mr. Gettu you now have another moral and political dilemma that you must either address or hide and we call upon you to prove that you are the mangers we all hope you are and make the changes.

Our one brave former ResRep who replied is correct that OHRM is a joke. OHRM and OAS management allowed the security unit to create the Afrikaner “mafia” if they did not provide the management necessary.

Where except in UNDP can you top up your team with mostly one nationality and get away with it? Where was our staff association in protecting us from this travesty? Where is Mr. Samaras, our President, who claim to be honest and put staff first why is he not speaking out? If OHRM denies responsibility then the question is who was “protecting” Mr. Leon and Mr. Jab as they did this?

The former ResRep was also correct that the Administrator should look at the qualifications of those in the security team now and a focus on those mentioned originally to see if this is true. He or she is correct that dilettantes should not be meddling in affairs as serious as security. When this happen you get Algiers.

If OHRM practices in the security unit were abrogated and allows Mr. Leon’s Afrikaners an advantage the Administrator should demand to know why and these should be removed.
The sad part of this story is that many people allowed Mr. Leon and Mr. Jab to mismanage the security for UNDP for a long time. I think this is why Mr. Leon did not get his coveted D1 and was replaced. The acorn doesn’t fall far from the tree and Mr. Jab and the other Afrikaners remain in situ. Now they are about to send another South African educated to Lebanon, without due process.

Why did nobody come forward earlier?

I think this blog explains why. Our voices have not been heard for so many years that we fear speaking up. There is no whistleblower protections for many of us in UNDP. UNDP has refused in implementing an internal ethics investigations office. Where else are we to turn? There are really few secrets in UNDP you just have to ask the right persons the right questions. Ask your administrative staff we know. Ask your staff association they know. If you ask however you must provide us the protection to honestly speak out.

UNDP watch and Innercity Press have shown that speaking out without these protections places your future in UN at risk. And I doubt that the USUN mission will protect any of us who are not American nationality.

We are all watching and waiting to see what will happen. Thank you UNDP Watch.

Friday, June 20, 2008

UNDP Syria post conflicting accounting numbers for "sake of transparency"

This is the transparency and quality of reporting that UNDP promiss to donors and member states
Fund Resources and Annual Expenditures
(none published, while numbers don't match still)

Dervis plans to comeback in Turkey's politics protested. ....contract up in November 2008

While Ban Ki-moon gives his last hand to Kemal Dervis' attempt to return back to Turkish politics, it seems that the labor Unions back in otoman empire doesn't like at all the idea of his return.

Today the representatives of Confederation of Turkish labor Unions (Türk-İş), Confederation of Turkish Real Trade Unions (Hak-İş), Confederation of Revolutionary Workers' Unions (DİSK) and Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB) announced that they would not join High Consultative Council meeting on new constitution in protest of the participation of Kemal Derviş, the head of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) who in 2001 became Turkey's economy minister after a 22-year career at the World Bank. Turkey in 2001 was facing its worst economic crisis in modern history. Sources closes to the unions said they understood Derviş had plans to come back to the Turkish political scene by autum.

Very strangely the recent contract extension that Ban Ki-moon handed out to his USG's and ASG's, list Kemal Dervis with an expiration of November 2008. While Ban has already extended Ad Melkert (Dutch sources say), it seem that he or Mr. Dervis himself has other plans passed November 08.

While in Turkey all Labour Union protest against the UNDP Leader, UNDP itself proclaim his "short" visit in Turkey as yet another success story. You can read more about it here.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


By Jerry Okungu
Hargeisa, Somaliland
June 16, 2008

A few weeks before Kenya’s elections, in mid October 2007 to be precise, this author caught a UNDP vehicle based in Nairobi distributing hate leaflets targeting Raila Odinga, the then main challenger to Mwai Kibaki in Dagoretti Corner of Nairobi.
This muddy Saturday afternoon, a Volvo with UN registration looked stuck in the mud.

As he drove by after getting a tip from some young men, he stopped to find out what the UN vehicle was doing in that God-forsaken place so late in the evening on a Saturday afternoon bearing in mind that most UN offices close down on Friday midday.
When he moved closer, he found two young men seated comfortably distributing Raila Odinga’s alleged version of his MoU with the Muslim community. That document was as damaging as it possibly could. It talked of Raila in future introducing Sharia law in Kenya and turning Kenya into an Islamic state.

It talked of every major wish list a Muslim would have of a perfect Islamic state. It left it in no one’s mind that Christians and other religious groups would be in deep trouble should Raila Odinga’s ODM win the elections. For all intents and purposes, this document was meant to instill fear in Americans, the British and any other power that would abhor another Islamic state in the Horn of Africa.

After getting a copy of this seditious document, this author took the picture of the vehicle and sent it to all the newsrooms in Nairobi with a caption “Is the UN involved in Kenya’s local political campaign?”

Of all the newsrooms that received the damaging picture, only the Nairobi Star used the story and the picture and followed it up with the UN in Gigiri. The vehicle was traced to the UNDP in Gigiri and after that there was a general stone-walling on how it got involved in the murky waters of Kenyan elections.

Soon after the elections, news leaked that top ranking officials of UNDP in Nairobi together with the then World Bank Director, Collin Bruce had secretly endorsed the flawed elections that caused over two thousand lives and hundreds of thousands of internally displaced persons.

Since then, Collin Bruce has been recalled to Washington while the fate of top UNDP officials in Nairobi still remains a mystery after the Chief UN official in Nairobi called a press conference to dissociate herself from the purported endorsement of Kenya’s election results.

As the war raged in the streets of Kenya with Kofi Annan in town to resolve the dispute, a UN official in the Communications department met me by accident at the Serena Hotel. On being introduced to him by his brother, he just fell short of punching me on the face when he was told I was the Jerry Okungu who had filed the UNDP- story and picture of the UN vehicle!

This week, as I was busy going through the newspapers in Somaliland, I came across this article in the Somaliland Times which incidentally was filed from Nairobi in mid May 2008 accusing UNDP of involvement with the Islamic Courts in Somalia! Is this a coincidence or a well orchestrated UNDP network in Africa to meddle in the politics of the regions? Can some UN official clear the air?
Read on a make your own conclusions.

“Nairobi, May 17, 2008 –
A former employee of the UNDP has reportedly accused the agency of involvement with and support to a remittance company linked to the ousted Union of Islamic Courts. This support, according to Ismail Ahmed, included intervening to help the company, Dalsan win U.S. licenses and unfreezing funds blocked in Switzerland on suspicion of money laundering and terrorist financing.

Dalsan was the remittance company which was being headed by Abdilkadir Hashi Ayro, younger brother to Aden Hashi Ayro, leader of the Al-Shabbab who was killed during a US air raid early this month. Two years ago, the remittance company is said to have collapsed and suffered a loss of about $30,000,000.

Ahmed, who worked for UNDP from 2005 and 2007, provided a detailed dossier to Reuters also accused the UN agency of terminating his contract and taking retaliatory measures against him.

A Washington-based Government Accountability Project supported Ahmed's account. Shelley Walden, international programme associate at the non-profit group, told Reuters that the UNDP had turned a blind eye to wrongdoing and damaged its credibility.

UNDP spokesman Stephane Dujarric said: "Clearly UNDP takes all these allegations extremely seriously and we are in fact investigating them thoroughly."
He said the agency's Office of Audit and Investigations had already produced a report on the alleged retaliation for Ahmed's whistle blowing. Its new ethics adviser, who began work on December 1, would review the report and decide what action to take.

Dujarric however refrained from commenting on specific allegations.
"We're going at this with a very open mind. What we will find, we will find...I can't prejudge what the investigation team will find," he told Reuters.
Dalsan, according to some expert accounts was either the largest or the second-largest Somali money-wiring company after its competition Al-Barakaat's assets were frozen by US Executive Order immediately after 9/11.

It had offices in US, Great Britain, Kenya, and the United Arab Emirates where its headquarters was based before Abdilkadir moved it to Mogadishu.
"A report by the European Commission's Nairobi-based Somali Unit estimates that at its height in the aftermath of the U.S. actions against Al-Barakaat, Dalsan, which was, rather interestingly, formed in August 2001, was moving at least $100 million a year," according to J. Peter Pham who is the Director of the Nelson Institute for International and Public Affairs.

Pham adds: "In early May 2006, Dalsan folded its operations without warning, taking with it not only the $10 million to $30 million in capital invested by individual shareholders, but an estimated $9 million to $12 million in unconsummated money transfers from ordinary customers.

Company officials – at least those who can be tracked down – have thus far refused to explain the causes of the shutdown, much less elaborate on the fate of the funds entrusted to them."

"A little more detachment, however, raises even greater concerns. Is it yet another coincidence that Dalsan was closely linked with the likes of the Sheikh Osman and Hashi 'Ayro brothers, all of whom were leading figures in the Al-Itihaad precursor of the Islamic Courts militia?

And is it still another mere coincidence that the extremist forces within the ICU received a massive infusion of arms and men in the same month that Dalsan collapsed – reinforcements that tipped the scales in the Islamists' battle with U.S.-backed factions for control of Mogadishu?" Pham asks in his report written in 2006.”
Source: The Reporter, Somaliland Times and Reuters

Nairobi, May 17, 2008 – A former employee of the UNDP has reportedly accused the agency of involvement with and support to a remittance company linked to the ousted Union of Islamic Courts.

A former employee of the UNDP has reportedly accused the agency of involvement with and support to a remittance company linked to the ousted Union of Islamic Courts.
This support, according to Ismail Ahmed, included intervening to help the company Dalsan win U.S. licenses and unfreezing funds blocked in Switzerland on suspicion of money laundering and terrorist financing.

Dalsan was the remittance company which was being headed by Abdilkadir Hashi Ayro, younger brother to Aden Hashi Ayro, leader of the Al-Shabbab who was killed during a US air raid early this month.

Two years ago, the remittance company is said to have collapsed and suffered a loss of about $30,000,000.
Ahmed, who worked for UNDP from 2005 and 2007, provided a detailed dossier to Reuters also accused the UN agency of terminating his contract and taking retaliatory measures against him.

A Washington-based Government Accountability Project supported Ahmed's account. Shelley Walden, international programme associate at the non-profit group, told Reuters that the UNDP had turned a blind eye to wrongdoing and damaged its

UNDP spokesman Stephane Dujarric said: "Clearly UNDP takes all these allegations extremely seriously and we are in fact investigating them thoroughly."
He said the agency's Office of Audit and Investigations had already produced a report on the alleged retaliation for Ahmed's whistle blowing. Its new ethics adviser, who began work on December 1, would review the report and decide what action to take.

Dujarric however refrained from commenting on specific allegations.
"We're going at this with a very open mind. What we will find, we will find...I can't prejudge what the investigation team will find," he told Reuters.

Dalsan, according to some expert accounts was either the largest or the second-largest Somali money-wiring company after its competition Al-Barakaat's assets were frozen by US Executive Order immediately after 9/11.

It had offices in US, Great Britain, Kenya, and the United Arab Emirates where its headquarters was based before Abdilkadir
moved it to Mogadishu.
"A report by the European Commission's Nairobi-based Somali Unit estimates that at its height in the aftermath of the U.S. actions against Al-Barakaat, Dalsan, which was, rather interestingly, formed in August 2001, was moving at least $100 million a year," according to J. Peter Pham is Director of the Nelson Institute for International and Public Affairs.

Pham adds: "In early May 2006, Dalsan folded its operations without warning, taking with it not only the $10 million to $30 million in capital invested by individual shareholders, but an estimated $9 million to $12 million in unconsummated money transfers from ordinary customers.

Company officials – at least those who can be tracked down – have thus far refused to explain the causes of the shutdown, much less elaborate on the fate of the funds entrusted to them."

"A little more detachment, however, raises even greater concerns. Is it yet another coincidence that Dalsan was closely linked with the likes of the Sheikh Osman and Hashi 'Ayro brothers, all of whom were leading figures in the Al-Itihaad precursor of the Islamic Courts militia? And is it still another mere coincidence that the extremist forces within the ICU received a massive infusion of arms and men in the same month that Dalsan collapsed – reinforcements that tipped the scales in the
Islamists' battle with U.S.-backed factions for control of Mogadishu?" Pham asks in his report written in 2006.

Source: The Somaliland Times Reporter and Reuters

The UN's Gravy Train to Iran Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The United Nations Development Program (“UNDP”) is the largest of the UN’s bureaucratic programs, controlling as much as $5 billion of the $20 billion plus budget of the entire UN system. The U.S. is the biggest contributor to the UNDP, with annual contributions of over $100 million. However, since the UNDP coordinates the funding of many other UN development-related programs as well, the actual amount of U.S. funds controlled by the UNDP is much higher. At the same time, the UNDP is one of the most scandal-ridden of the UN’s agencies, which takes some doing.

There is simply no transparency in how the United Nations Development Program spends our money. The UNDP has an administrative procedure that allows for cash transfers directly to governments to implement much of its programs, with some cash transfers going to some of the world’s worst human rights abusing and terrorist sponsoring states. For example, an investigation of the UNDP’s activities in North Korea, which the UNDP first commissioned and then tried to hobble when it was getting too close to the truth, just recently concluded that the UN agency was in bed with the North Korean dictator Kim Jong II to a far greater extent than it had previously acknowledged.

The UNDP has refused to cooperate with any truly independent audit of its activities in North Korea. Nevertheless, even the internal investigation it permitted managed to find that at least $20 million was transferred from the UNDP directly to the North Korean regime for so-called development projects – more than twice as much as the UNDP had previously owned up to. The report also found that the UNDP had enabled North Korea to use UN-affiliated accounts to launder money and to import dual-use technology involving items that were “controlled by the U.S. for national security and anti-terrorism reasons” without obtaining a required U.S. export license.[1]

This report follows on the heels of other troubling investigations. One involved the UNDP’s operations in Russia, where an audit found extensive fraud at the UN office in Moscow. Another audit of the UNDP’s global procurement practices found no real controls with respect to vetting of the firms the UNDP is doing business with. For example, the UNDP does not ask new vendors for the identity of their owners or other corporate ties. It does not have an effective system for cross-checking its vendors with UN terrorist sanctions lists.

In light of this scurrilous record, it is shocking to find out how much the United Nations Development Program is currently involved in supporting the rogue terrorist sponsoring regime in Iran. The UNDP alone has been directly providing the Iranian regime with an average of $7 million per year of largesse for the last three years. Including both the regular and extra budgetary resources of the UNDP and all of its partner UN agencies, funds and programs coordinated by the UNDP under the umbrella known as the United Nations Development Assistance Framework, the targeted amount of resources expected to be made available to the Iranian regime during the 2005 – 2009 timeframe is $177 million.[2] And this is just what the UNDP admits to in its public documents!

The Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on behalf of the Iranian government, manages all external aid and carries overall responsibility for the coordination of the UNDP’s program in Iran. This is the same ministry whose chief told the UN Security Council last year that no UN sanctions can make the Iranian nation retreat from its nuclear enrichment program. The United Nations Development Program is helping to make his words come true.

While Iran flouts the current UN Security Council sanctions resolutions meant to deter its nuclear ambitions, the United Nations Development Program is actively aiding Iran to obtain potential dual-use technology. It is doing so by enabling, in its own words, the “transfer of knowledge in science and technology through technology-based services”, programs to “improve technological capacity in industries”, and “joint international research projects”. The transfer will include “advance processing technologies and innovative system design.”[3] There is no mention of any limitations on the types of technology eligible for transfer under the UNDP’s auspices, nor of any mechanisms that the UNDP has in place to effectively monitor whether the technology is being used by the Iranian government to enhance its military capacity or whether Iran will further share the technology with the terrorist organizations that the regime sponsors.

For example, the United Nations Development Program, the World Health Organization and UNESCO have partnered with the Iranian Research Organization for Science and Technology, an innocent sounding scientific group. However, it turns out that, according to Iran Watch, the Iranian Research Organization for Science and Technology has been listed by the Japanese government as an entity of concern for biological, chemical and nuclear weapon proliferation. It was identified by the British government as having procured goods and/or technology for weapons of mass destruction programs. And it has reportedly acted as a front for the purchase of fungus from Canada and Netherlands for producing toxins.

The UN development bureaucrats are also moving to prop up Iran’s economy, observing in the UN Development Report on Iran cited below that the relative wealth enjoyed by the country due to its vast oil and gas reserves needs to be “translated into stronger economic performance in the long term.” The UN development bureaucrats plan that “the UN system will lend its support to the Iranian Government” by working to improve Iran’s “economic performance and management.” The goal is to increase Iran’s real economic growth by 8% per annum and to increase gross investment by 12.2% per annum.

To achieve these objectives, the United Nations Development Program is working hand in glove with the Iranian regime to strengthen its export, import and production capacities and to help its accession to the World Trade Organization. The UNDP’s extensive activities on the Iranian regime’s behalf, and the hard currency being pumped into Iran’s economy by the UNDP and its affiliated UN agencies, are operating at total cross-purposes with the ongoing efforts by the UN Security Council and Western democracies to isolate Iran from the international financial community. They are sabotaging such efforts to apply increasing pressure on Iran’s economy as leverage to induce Iran to verifiably suspend its nuclear enrichment program.

Another of the ways that the United Nations Development Program has said that it intends to help Iran’s economy is to partner with its biggest carmaker, Iran Khodro, which builds cars and commercial vehicles for domestic use and for export.

Khodro is doing fine enough on its own as the largest auto manufacturer in the Middle East, having forged lucrative partnerships with French, German and Chinese auto firms. Over the past ten years, Khodro has enjoyed an annual growth rate of 23 percent and has been manufacturing more than 650,000 cars.

However, it is not the fact that Khodro can prosper without any help from the UNDP that is so disturbing, although the European firms that are doing business with Khodro should reconsider how their private self-interest is conflicting with their governments’ stance against the Iranian regime. Rather, what is disturbing are Khodro’s reported links to Iran’s military and its relationships with two terrorist sponsoring rogue states, Syria and Sudan. These nefarious links and relationships should have given the UNDP pause if it were not intending all along to undermine the economic sanctions imposed on Iran by the UN Security Council, the United States and the European Union.

Iran’s Executive Director Manuchehr Manteqi was reportedly a Brigadier General in the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps during the 1990’s and has served as a senior official of Iran’s Defense Industries Organization.[4] According to Iran Watch, Khodro was listed by the German government as a risky end-user in warnings supplied to its exporters in 2004.

Khodro has publicly stated that it plans to use Sudan as a base for wide export of its products, working directly with Sudan’s defense ministry.

The United Nations Development Program hypes its ‘good governance’ agenda as a rationale for cooperating so extensively with the Iranian regime. Improved economic conditions will go hand in hand with measures to lessen corruption and increase openness, the UNDP propagandists tell us. The precise opposite has occurred. There is more political repression than ever in Iran. And when a member of the Iranian General Audit Office had the nerve recently to claim that “a mafia-style group of mullahs” is “plundering the country and sending the proceeds to foreign banks” he was promptly arrested by the secret police, presumably on orders from “Supreme Guide” Ali Khamenei.[5] There can be little doubt that the mullahs have their eyes on the UNDP-sponsored jackpot of $177 million flowing into Iran’s coffers.

The United Nations Development Program is aiding and abetting the Iranian regime’s nuclear ambitions and terrorist activities by enabling the transfer of potential dual-use technology to Iran. And it is strengthening the statist economy with unaccountable infusions of money to the regime’s government, and ultimately to the mullahs, to do with as they wish.

Except for the most limited form of emergency humanitarian relief, the United Nations Development Program and its partner UN agencies must be removed from Iran immediately. Their gravy train of money, technology and knowledge transfer to the Iranian regime must be stopped.

1 The U.N.’s North Korea Chutzpah by Melanie Kirkpatrick, The Wall Street Journal (June 12, 2008).

2 Islamic Republic of Iran United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) 2005-2009 (September 15, 2004) (“UN Development Report”).

3 Id.

4 Military Industries in the Islamic Republic of Iran: An Assessment of the Defense Industries Organization (DIO), Prepared for the United States Air Force Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio (May 1996).

5 Jailed for Outing the Mullah Mafia by Amir Taheri, New York Post (June 13, 2008).

UN-Millionen für Nordkorea

UN-Millionen für Nordkorea
UNDP-Prüfbericht bestätigt schwere Unregelmäßigkeiten.

Pjöngjang/Genf. (rel) Mitarbeiter und Funktionäre des UN-Entwicklungsprogramms (UNDP) für Nordkorea sollen entgegen interner Richtlinien seit 1997 Güter und Hilfsgelder in Millionenhöhe direkt und ohne Kontrolle an das Regime in Pjöngjang geleistet haben. Dies geht aus einem 353 Seiten starken Untersuchungsbericht (External Independent Investigative Review Panel) der UN hervor, der Anfang Juni veröffentlicht wurde und heute, Dienstag, neuerlich in Genf beraten werden soll.
Wie das US-Nachrichtenportal Fox-News zitiert, habe das UNDP der Besetzung "heikler UN-Mitarbeiterposten" wie den des Finanzreferenten durch die nordkoreanische Regierung geduldet, obwohl Angehörigen eines "Empfangsstaates" die Ausübung von UN-Funktionen nicht gestattet ist.

Hinzu kommt, dass die Gehälter der nordkoreanischen UN-Mitarbeiter laut Fox-News "in harter Währung" und direkt an das Regime in Pjöngjang überwiesen worden sein sollen. Wofür das Geld aber verwendet wurde, konnte nie überprüft werden. Laut Untersuchungsbericht dürften mindestens 9,12 Millionen Dollar irregulär geflossen sein.

Das Entwicklungsprogramm der Vereinten Nationen steht aber nicht nur wegen zweifelhafter Personalentscheidungen und illegaler Überweisungen unter Beschuss. Die Autoren des Berichts wollen zudem wissen, dass auch so genannte "duale Güter", die sowohl für zivile als auch für terroristische Zwecke genutzt werden können, nach Nordkorea geliefert wurden. Neben Computern und Software soll das Regime Satelliten-Empfangsgeräte, Spektrometer und Messapparate erhalten haben.

Nach Auffliegen der Verstöße wurde das Programm 2005 beendet. Die Verantwortlichen wurden bisher gerichtlich nicht belangt.

UN Buddies Up With Terror-Linked Islamic Charity — Again

It sounds like the ultimate Dog-Bites-Man story – ho hum, there’s the UN climbing into bed with yet another terror-linked outfit. Does it really matter?

You bet. Given the UN’s rapidly expanding resources and reach, and its proclivities for providing opaque, diplomatically immune conduits worldwide for men, materials, money and bad ideas, it actually does matter what the UN gets up to. For the case at hand, see the recent Fox News story headlined “UNICEF Partners With Islamic Charity Linked to Terror Groups” — this about UNICEF hooking up with a Saudi-based charity, the International Islamic Relief Organization, or IIRO, whose Philippine and Indonesian branches have been designated by the U.S. Treasury and the UN itself as terrorist entities linked to Al Qaeda. The article begins: “An Islamic Charity with ties to Al Qaeda and the Taliban is now collaborating with an unlikely new partner: UNICEF, the United Nations Children’s Fund.”

There’s just one point on which I would disagree. There is nothing “unlikely” about this charity, the IIRO, collaborating with UNICEF. This same Saudi charity, the IIRO, already has ties to the UN. The IIRO has held consultative status since 1995 with the UN General Assembly’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs, or ECOSOC. It also partners with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) — see pages 9 and 21– the kind of connection the UNHCR has particularly come to prize because of the potential for Saudi money — just search in this UNHCR document on “donor.” The Saudis say there’s nothing wrong with the IIRO, and we can only hope they’re right — because once something takes root at the UN, it almost never goes away. Last year, Reps. Zach Wamp, Thaddeus McCotter, Scott Garrett, Cliff Stearns and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen introduced a bill calling for the Secretary of State (see post below on Condi Rice, Saudi Arabia’s Nuclear Fool) to withhold some U.S. taxpayer money from the UN’s ECOSOC “until such time as the UN and ECOSOC have withdrawn consultative status for all organizations with any affiliations to terrorist organizations.” The bill mentioned one organization by name, the IIRO. Results to date: IIRO, still involved with ECOSOC and the UNHCR, now teams up with UNICEF. Dog bites man. That can hurt.

Armut aus der Villa bekämpfen

Hollands Ex-Entwicklungshilfeministerin Eveline Herfkens erfreut sich gerade anhaltend negativer Publizität. Die Sozialdemokratin wurde von ihrer Regierung nach New York geschickt, um dort im Auftrag der UNO einen Beitrag im Kampf gegen die Armut zu leisten.

In wenigstens einem Fall ist ihr das auch gelungen - es handelt sich allerdings um ihre eigene Person. Sie strich gegen die Regeln der UNO aus dem niederländischen Staatshaushalt ca. 280.000 Dollar Miet-Subventionen ein - die sie nun nicht zurückbezahlen will. Aussenminister Maxime Verhagen will sie möglicherweise verklagen.

Jetzt wird sie auch noch verspottet. Die Zeitschrift “Weekend” zeigt ein Foto von einer “rauchenden grauen Dame” (De Telegraaf), die voller Entschlossenheit im Kampf gegen die Armut in einem VW-Beatle “bei einer beachtlichen Villa in einem Naturgebiet von Washington” vorfährt. Die Villa soll angeblich 1,5 Millionen Dollar wert sein. Wer den Schaden hat…

Monday, June 16, 2008



Yesterday we had a caller tell us that her government school was promoting a "Trick or Treat for UNICEF" program for Halloween. She asked me what I though. I told her that UNICEF was definitely NOT one of my favorite charities.

Now I'm certainly not an expert on charities, though there are several that I personally support. My wife, however, has made herself somewhat of an expert through her own tax-exempt charitable foundation. Not meaning to brag, but Donna is so serious about the ethics of charitable giving that she personally shoulders all of the expenses of her foundation, donating 100% of foundation funds to charitable institutions and causes.

Now, as for UNICEF. The reason that I so strongly oppose donations to UNICEF is that when that money is spent on children's programs, these children are told that the money comes from the United Nations, not the people of the United States.

When a hungry child in Africa receives a meal from UNICEF, it's the United Nations doing the giving. When a sick child in Central America gets medical treatment from UNICEF .. once again, it's the UN doing the giving, not the United States.

I consider the UN to be an avowed enemy of our country and our sovereignty. Since the formation of the United Nations in 1945 – with few exceptions – the UN has worked against the best interests of the free world in general and the United States in particular. I think that it is foolhardy at best to have our children out there wandering door to door in their little costumes asking for money that will end up benign used to build loyalty not to the country that did the giving, but to the entity that actually distributes the funds, the United Nations.

If you're going to give money to needy children around the world, at least try to see to it that your country gets the credit.

I promised the caller yesterday that I would try to come up with some alternatives for her if she wanted to do something for a children's charity. I turned Donna loose last night with the assignment to research some children's charities. Her standards are tough, and she recommends you start with a charity that gets an "A" from the American Institute of Philanthropy.

So .. if you're of a mind to give to some charitable groups that does nice and wonderful things for children ... here's a list. Every one of these organizations gets an "A". Some of them only work domestically, some internationally ... none will give credit to the insipid United Nations for the work that they do.

The list is in no particular order.

Save the Children. This group is working right now with the American Red Cross to respond to the special needs of children who are victims of the California wild fires.

Doctors Without Borders. This group provides urgent medical care to hundreds of thousands of people, children included, in over 70 countries around the world every year. Now this is an international charity, so the U.S. isn't necessarily going to get the credit for the generosity of its citizens, but they do get an "A", they do good work, and they certainly aren't the United Nations.

America's Second Harvest . This organization feeds our country's hungry through a nationwide network of food banks. Charity begins at home, they say.

UNCF .. The United Negro College Fund. This is another "charity begins at home" suggestion. UNCH distributes more funds to help minorities attend school than any other entity outside government. It's hard to think of a more worthy cause. If you really want to fight poverty ... begin with education.

The Child Welfare League of America. Donna tells me that this organization has a vision that every child will grow up in a safe, loving and stable family. They are advocates for child protection, domestic violence prevention, adoption, solutions to baby abandonment and many more programs.

UNICEF Partners with Terrorist Organization

Yep, I know, its not a surprise to many of you, but for those who still have some UN delusions, here's some facts:

Forget UNICEF, and give to other groups -

[quote] there are plenty of other charitable groups that do wonderful things for children. But this time, UNICEF has really outdone itself.UNICEF has decided that it would be a great idea to partner with the International Islamic Relief Organization based in Saudi Arabia. It seems all well and good until you discover that the Islamic Relief Organization has been designated as a terrorist group by the United States and the United Nations itself!

Here are just a few details. In August 2006, the US Treasury Department designated two branches of the Islamic Relief Organization as terrorist organizations because they provided money and support to groups linked to al Qaeda including Abu Sayyaf (ASG) in the Philippines. A former member of this group in the Philippines testifies that a limited amount of foreign funding for the Islamic Relief Organization goes to legitimate projects and the rest of the money goes to terrorist operations. This group, as well as others, is on the United Nations 1267 Committee's consolidated list of individuals and entities associated with the Taliban, al Qaida and Osama Bin Ladin. [quote]

LOL, UNICEF partners with a terrorist supporter outlawed by the US AND the UN itself!

Must be confusing at the UN, trying to keep all those accounts straight, which ones have money flowing IN from yahoos here in the US who think they are helping little starving kids, while the other accounts are going OUT to the progressive muslim terrorists, er, agrarian reformers.

A bookie's nightmare.

UNDP assisted Iranian Regime to set-up and strengthen its terrorist banking network in Latin America

UN's Security Council Resolutions 1737 and 1747 called for the whole world to watch out from Iranian's Regime tentatives to disguise its proliferation and terrorism activities through various forms and mechanisms to evade being detected.

To further respond to the Iranian threats on March 03, 2008 the UN Security Council passed a resolution in which called all UN Member States to "exercise vigilante" over activities of financial and banking systems in their countries with Iran's Banks.

But while member states, were engagted in saveguarding and complying to such World Resolutions, it seems that UN's flagship agency, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) once again opted out claiming immunity of any such Resolutions.

In April 1st, 2008 the United States Mission to the UN (USUN) sent a letter to Ad Melker and Kemal Dervis asking for a disclosure of all Procurement Contracts/Vendors awarded in the past years, the UNDP leadership freaked out.

The whole month of April and May they prepared squads in each Regional Bureau to : (a) identify potential wrong doings; (b) clean-up where possible; (c) destroy all evidence.
As part of a latest clean-up of Financial Accounts and its Vendor List, the office of Darshak Shah and julie Anne Mejia in cooperation with the Regional Bureau of Latin America have deleted from the UNDP's ATLAS at HQs and in about 13 Country Office Business Units (BU) the following Vendor:

#1289: Banco Internacional de Desarrollo SA (Venezuela)

For the past 3 weeks only a handful of officials and selected Finance "experts" were informed about the operation.

The order was clear:

1. If BU had no transaction with the above vendor => ACTION = DELETE;

2. if BU had transactions thru the above vendor and entries were recorded in GL => ACTION = Change Vendor form to read = BID = Banco Inter-americano de Desarrollo;

Since very few people inside Comptroller's and Treasury's offices have the rights to make changes in ATLAS and change as well Vendor INFO Page, is very easy to identify who took such actions.

While is certain that UNDP or so called Programa de las Naciones Unidas para el Desarrollo (PNUD) has done "nothing wrong" and is un-justifiably being targeted, the entire ATLAS records of BUs from Venezuela, Guatemala, Ecuador, etc, as well as HQs proves the contrary.

One question comes to our mind - how many Iranian officials has UNDP sponsored to travel to Latin America in the past 3 years for "training", "exchange programmes" and "capacity building"??

Another question is how can a Finance Officer either at HQs or COs mistake two disctinct vendors, one called :
  • (1) Banco Inter-Americano de Desarrollo; with
  • (2) Banco Internacional de Desarrollo SA; ?

Only at UNDP kids - only at UNDP !!!

Friday, June 13, 2008

US Government Statement on Review of UNDP's Operations in North Korea

June 12, 2008


Office of Press and Public Diplomacy
United States Mission to the United Nations
140 East 45th Street
New York, N.Y. 10017

U.S. Statement on the Report of the External Independent Investigative Review Panel: UN Development Program Activities in North Korea 1999-2007, June 12, 2008


The United States welcomes the Panel's Report and remains concerned by a number of its findings and the on-going need for corrective action. The United States has been working with UNDP management for over a year now to address systemic weaknesses through our UN Transparency and Accountability Initiative (UNTAI). In the coming months, we will follow up with UNDP management to address the Panel's findings and recommendations. We expect our collective effort to result in an appropriate transparency and accountability system for the organization that can help turn the page on this episode.

During the 1999-2007 period covered by the Panel's review, the United States provided over $1.5 billion to support UNDP and its activities worldwide. As one of the largest donors to UNDP and a member of its Executive Board, the United States has a responsibility to ensure the organization meets the standards of accountability and trust expected of public institutions. We must ensure that funding provided to UNDP is used in the most effective way possible and for its intended purpose -- to help the world's poor. In this spirit we offer the following observations.

The Report, which is voluminous, confirms many previous concerns raised by Member States and the findings of both the UN Board of Auditors (BOA) and the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI) that there were broad management deficiencies across the entire UNDP/DPRK Country Program regarding payment modalities, staffing practices and project monitoring.

Specifically, we note that the Report confirms that payments were made in bearer instruments, such as cash or 'cash-checks.' As a result of this practice, this Report, like the previous BOA Report, was unable to determine whether check payments made by UNDP to persons and entities were received by the intended beneficiaries. In fact, the Report confirms that "core functions," such as Finance Officer, were performed by local North Korean personnel seconded from the DPRK government. The Report also confirms that UNDP project visits were circumscribed by the DPRK government through required advance "clearance or authorization." Further, the Report confirmed that there were broader management deficiencies relating to project monitoring and implementation across the entire UNDP DPRK Country Program.

As the U.S. Senate PSI Report indicated, these problems might have been addressed earlier had internal audits done by UNDP been made available to Members of the UNDP Executive Board. We therefore welcome the Panel's recommendation that UNDP make its internal audits available to Member States. We are working with UNDP and other Funds and Programs to ensure this becomes a normal practice across the UN system.

We note that the figures provided in the Report are inexact regarding the transfer of funds to the DPRK or DPRK-controlled entities by UNDP and by other UN agencies acting on UNDP's behalf. The figures cover a wide range of possible amounts. Nonetheless, the report does appear to confirm much larger figures than reported earlier by UNDP.

In reviewing available UNDP project budget documents, the Panel was unable to determine in 74% cases "whether the ultimate beneficiary is consistent with the payee name indicated in the financial system," reflecting lax fiduciary practices. Moreover, the Panel was unable to conclusively determine if diversion occurred.

The Panel noted that there is no evidence that UNDP officials knew that the DPRK government misused accounts that had been set up to receive UNDP funds to transfer North Korean monies abroad to avoid possible sanctions or to entities associated with secret weapons programs - nevertheless, we are deeply troubled by this misuse. The Report observes that UNDP did not sufficiently align its management controls to the "challenging environment" in which it found itself operating. Accordingly, the Report recommends "that an evaluation of UNDP-DPRK controls be performed" to strengthen these controls.

The Panel Report revealed an absence of understanding and required sensitivity to U.S. export control laws with respect to "dual use" items. As a result, a large number of sensitive items controlled by the U.S. for "national security and anti-terrorism reasons" were exported and/or retransferred by UNDP to North Korea without licenses.

The Panel noted that UNDP staff had long been aware of the use of counterfeit notes in North Korea. Previous UNDP staff in Pyongyang recognized that "counterfeiting was a significant issue at that time," and took measures to limit UNDP's vulnerability. However, "from the fall of 1999 to 2007, there was no apparent discussion among the Country Office staff about taking proactive measures." UNDP headquarters also ignored warning signs regarding counterfeit U.S. currency, which the U.S. Government brought to the attention of UNDP in the summer of 2006. The Panel noted that the head of UNDP Pyongyang office learned about the counterfeit U.S. currency stored in his office safe in October 2006, but waited until February 2007 to inform UNDP headquarters. The Panel also noted inconsistent accounts of this issue from the UNDP Comptroller.

Finally, the Report found that the whistleblower was justified in raising issues about UNDP's practices in the DPRK and that "he reported conduct and facts about UNDP operations in the DPRK that required resolution and may well have been in violation of UNDP policies as well as applicable agreements with the DPRK." It appears that the whistleblower did not have an opportunity to comment on the Panel's report before it was released.

PART 2: UNDP lied while under-oath at US Congressional Hearings...

Mr. Morrison?

Thank you. As Fred just said, the -- to respond to the question why is UNDP hesitant, traditionally the hesitancy has come from the understanding at UNDP -- and, I think, in other parts of the funds and programs as well -- that the internal audits are management tools that then feed into an external audit process which is available to member states.
And my understanding is that's how the member states set up the system, so it's actually two-tiered, with the internal audits being just for UNDP management, and the external audits being widely available to member states. And the external auditors have full access to the internal audits.
In terms of why they're considered management tools -- and I think the question that has been asked throughout the morning -- why does the Secretariat make their audits -- or other organizations, not just the Secretariat, make their audits fully available, and the funds and programs up to this point have had a more restrictive regime?
UNDP's view on this -- and again, it's listening to its member states -- is that we're a field-based organization. We run operations in 166 countries. Our primary partner in those countries is the national government.
We run programs, in some cases, which national governments consider very sensitive. I'm thinking of gender programs that we run in some countries, or democratic governance programs that we run in some countries.
The strong sense that we're getting from our executive board, and particularly the program countries in which we work, is that they are reluctant to have what is, in effect, very frank comment on their own programs made publicly available.
I think as you know, Kemal Dervis has a proposal in front of the executive board this week that they're debating today and tomorrow to try to square the circle of the very legitimate demands for increased oversight with those feelings from the program countries.

Has there ever been a resolution at the U.N. to change the policy relative to audits that was voted on by the assembly, General Assembly?

My understanding is that as part of or subsequent to the oil-for-food affair, the General Assembly did, in fact, require the Secretariat to make its audits public, but perhaps...

Just the Secretariat, but not the programs.

No, not the funds and programs. In such matters, we are governed by our executive board.

Not by the General Assembly?

That's my understanding.

And has anyone on the executive board, including the United States, ever made a motion that those internal audits be made public?

There is no question that the United States and several other countries, primarily on the donor side, have moved very strongly to increase access to internal audits.
There's been equally strong feelings on the other side, primarily but not exclusively the program countries, the recipient countries, that do not want to have such a broad access regime.
So the proposal before the executive board today and tomorrow, which I think both Senator Coleman and yourself, Mr. Chairman, have said is a -- have characterized as a step in the right direction -- although not going far enough, because I think Senator Coleman listed three or four additional steps that you'd like to see.
In any event, that is the proposal that our administrator has put before our governing council. And we very much hope that it carries. And I know that he spoke personally with both of you on that.

In your opening statement, Mr. Tipson, you said that the UNDP did not transfer tens of millions of dollars to the North Korean government. How many dollars were transferred?

In our written statement, we've tried to summarize the various accounts, the various summaries of funds that went.
With respect to the NCC for UNDP account, which has been the subject of such controversy, the total amount of money that we transferred to that account over the 10-year period covered in that chart is, I think, $375,000, $376,000.
It was not a -- and we can discuss how development projects are done in North Korea that indicate why that is not a larger channel of funding that goes through that account.

Well, now, you heard Ambassador Wallace say that the UNDP sent perhaps much more than $7 million in cash to the UNDP-related account. Did you hear him?


Do you have a reaction to that?

Well, again, our records are pretty clear on what went into that account, and it's a matter of the reliability of our systems, which we take great pride in, frankly, in knowing how much money went into that account.
It's not possible that the money that's being discussed, either $2.7 million, or $7 million, or the higher amounts that have been discussed were money that came from the United Nations Development Program.

Into that specific account.

That's right.

OK. Thank you.
Senator Coleman?

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
And I appreciate, gentlemen, the opportunity for this briefing, and I look forward to this as a conversation, or we'd like a little help on figuring out where do we go to make sure that in other countries the imprimatur of the U.N. is not being used for shell organizations, money laundering, transferring cash.
I just want to get back to this issue about the amount of dollars, and part of the confusion is the internal auditors -- I was looking at -- on the subcommittee report -- it talks about the difference, by the way, between -- not that chart -- but NEX and DEX, OK?
There are some programs that you give the money directly to the North Koreans and others that you provide the -- you do it yourself, and so the testimony is that most of the programs in North Korea you were doing, so you weren't turning over cash to the North Koreans. Is that correct?

Can I have my colleague David Lockwood, who's...

Mr. Lockwood?

That's absolutely correct, Senator. The norm across the world is that most programs are executed with governments who have full responsibility for their own...

And is that NEX or DEX? Which one is it?

And that's called NEX.


National execution.

National execution.

In the case of North Korea, they also preferred that route, but at our insistence large amounts of the money were, in fact, directly executed by UNDP so that we could have direct controls in place.

But the problem we have is if you look at your internal auditing, you have it broken up as 48 percent -- 48 percent is going to NEX and, what, 40 percent DEX.

That's correct, Senator.

That's the chart.

The chart is correct.

So the auditors are not aware of the internal arrangements?

I think the auditors were aware of the internal arrangements, and the distinction, of course, is that within what is formally nationally executed, the government in turn has asked UNDP, at our insistence, to execute a large proportion -- the largest proportion of that ourselves, which we also call direct execution.

Indeed, there's a sentence right here, Senator -- the office is providing 100 percent support services to NEX projects. In other words, we executed on their behalf, even though it was called national execution.

But when you say we executed, are you talking about executing by employees in North Korea, by the program in North Korea, is that correct?

The overall employee base.

And one of our concerns here -- and again, you said simply way of operating -- is the North Koreans -- they were North Korean agents. They picked the employees. They ran the programs. Is that a fair statement?

Senator, it's fundamental of the way we work in development that it is a matter of capacity building. It's the locals we're trying to create the capabilities to do development.

But there's a difference between the government supplying government agents -- I'm not talking about development. There are other programs in which we actually hire locals, and then you're hiring people.


But there's a difference between those folks and the government saying, "This is who's going to sit in that position." They're agents of the government.
That's not development, the government simply saying, "Here's who you're going to hire, and here's who's going to run the program."

But the test, Senator, would be whether the work gets done. I mean, the objective is to accomplish development projects, and David, of course, is the one with the experience in North Korea.
But the test is whether those employees are actually doing the work that they're paid for.

But again, the conversation...


... to say that that's capacity building, when a government tells you, "These are the people you're hiring," I don't think that -- I'm a former mayor. That's not capacity building. And this is a conversation, not a debate.
I'm wondering if we can go to the chart with the application payment order, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of New York. One of the things that the committee found -- North Koreans have admitted -- is that they created this International Finance and Trade Joint Company, which is a shell company, to then transfer -- used to transfer dollars from North Korea to embassies in New York -- excuse me, in New York, in other places around -- Paris, whatever.
And I understand in our conversations this -- you weren't aware of this arrangement, is that a fair statement?

We were not aware at all of this arrangement.

But in fact, it went -- were you aware of the International Finance and Trade Joint Company?

I think we can all say we were not aware of that company.

All right. So my question is how do we -- are there some procedural things that could be put in place that -- you know, I'm thinking, you know, co-signing checks or doing something that would put you in a better place, other U.N. agencies in a better place, for their seal -- you know, this is a Good Housekeeping seal.
Money's being transferred, financial institutions, it says B.I. -- it says B.I. -- National Coordinating Committee for UNDP, message, payment for purchase of building in Canada. It looks like a pretty basic transaction.
We know the buildings weren't purchased. We don't know where the money went. But is there a system that you've thought about that would help make sure that your good name, your Good Housekeeping seal, is not abused by countries like North Korea or other places in the world?

One of the recommendations that your staff makes in this report is that it be accomplished by changing the structure of how these accounts are managed and giving development agencies like UNDP co-signing authority so that actually the money is jointly controlled by the development agency.
That's something we're going to have to consider as a structural change. I will say that that's a significant challenge for all development agencies, to get countries to agree that that's the right approach to take. But I think it's one that we're going to have to consider very carefully.
There are really two problems here. One is the money and the other is the name. And I think we're able to protect ourselves from the abuse of the money by making sure we know how much goes in and how much doesn't go in.
As far as the name goes, it's very difficult to prevent any government from using our name on any account they want to use. And that wouldn't even be solved by the structural approach proposed by the staff, although it would accomplish other objectives.

Just one other chart, perhaps. This is Sindok Trading. This apparently is a legitimate transaction of UNDP, so about $229,000, almost $230,000 -- and the name of the applicant on this one is the International Finance and Trade Joint Company.
So you have the shell company being used to transit a legitimate transaction. Is there in place any process or something that would kind of alert you to the fact that you may have a shell company?
Again, I'm trying to find out are there things that we can do to make sure that we don't give legitimacy to what we have found out to be shell companies that were used for the purpose of laundering cash.

Can I ask David Morrison to...


Sure, Senator Coleman. I think that we've researched this particular transaction quite extensively. It was a legitimate transaction. We got what we paid for in the $229,000.
We, frankly, did not know that when we went to the bank and said would you please pay this company in Singapore that they were sending the money via an entity that has, for us, subsequently been identified as an entity involved in financial shenanigans, you know, about which we're, of course, not happy.
There is a recommendation in the staff report in regards to a separate issue which is our financial transactions with an entity called Zang Lok, which does recommend that the various entities and various organizations in the international community, U.N. and presumably non-U.N., make stronger efforts to share information about which entities may be up to no good.
And we fully support that recommendation.

UNDP Crash-for-Spin Programme

That hush around the UN yesterday morning was the press presumably speed-reading at the rate of about 175-pages per hour the 353-page UNDP-commissioned, UNDP-presented report reviewing the UNDP program for North Korea, which was shuttered last year after it made headlines with the Cash-for-Kim scandal (Kim, as in Kim Jong Il). Having given the press all of about two hours to absorb and digest the entire contents — in which the worst news, per UN tradition, was somehow buried deep in the report — the head of the UNDP, Kemal Dervis, appeared at 11 A.M. Monday at the UN briefing podium to handle questions, or dictate headlines, or however one cares to describe it.

Shouldn’t the investigators themselves have presented the report and taken questions? Nope. This is the UN. The trio who led the investigation, explained Dervis, prefer not to answer questions until the report has been presented to the UNDP Executive Board, due to meet later this month, not in NY (where the UNDP has its headquarters), but in Geneva.

I’m still reading, with a growing sense of deja-oil-for-food-coverup. For a handy summary so far, here’s an editorial on Cash for Kim, Revisited, from today’s Wall Street Journal. More to come.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The U.N.'s North Korea Chutzpah

June 12, 2008

Cindy Adams, the New York Post's doyenne of dish, ends her gossip column with a signature sign-off: "Only in New York, kids, only in New York."

I thought of this tag line recently in an unlikely context - a report issued last week by the latest group of investigators charged with reviewing the United Nations Development Program's operations in North Korea. The program was so rife with scandal that the U.N. agency last year took the unprecedented step of withdrawing from the country.

Listen to the UNDP and the report is an exoneration of its work in North Korea and an indictment of the U.S., which first went public with charges of gross mismanagement a year and a half ago. Read the report, however, and a different picture emerges. The findings are consistent with the U.S. allegations: large sums of money that vanished after being transferred to Pyongyang; dual-use technology shipped off to the North without the requisite U.S. export licenses; a whistleblower without whose input the abuses would not have been uncovered. It also contradicts much of what UNDP officials said in sworn testimony last year to the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.

The report was commissioned by the UNDP and undertaken by a panel of investigators selected by the agency. It is the third probe of the UNDP's operations in the North, following reports last year by U.N. auditors and U.S. Senate investigators. Yet even the UNDP's own investigators - who had full access to the players and documents involved - were unable to come up with a complete picture of the agency's operations in North Korea. The UNDP's record-keeping was so poor that the investigator's dictum - follow the money - was impossible to heed.

When a Journal editorial last week cited disbursements of $57.1 million to $72.3 million from 1999 to 2007 based on data in the report - far higher than the $30 million to $40 million claimed by the UNDP at a press conference - the agency first told us our arithmetic was wrong, and then said the panel had made an error that it planned to correct. Whatever. An accurate accounting is apparently beyond the UNDP's capability. The report specifies that the panel "was unable to confirm the total size" of the program because it did not have "full financial transaction information."

Even so, the report details a much larger program than the UNDP had previously represented as well as far higher transfers to the North Korean government than it previously admitted. A minimum of $9.13 million went directly into the coffers of Kim Jong Il's regime, to 11 different agencies. Data in the report suggest the transfers may have been $20 million or more.

That's a far cry from what the UNDP told the U.S. mission to the U.N. and Senate investigators. According to the Senate report, UNDP officials said the "National Coordinating Committee," or NCC, was the "entity the North Korean government designated to receive UNDP funds for use on Development Projects." How much did the NCC receive? The "UNDP informed the Subcommittee that over an eight-year period from 1999 until the program's suspension in 2007, its records showed that it has transferred no more than $380,000 of UNDP project funds to the NCC UNDP bank account."

Senators don't take kindly to being misled by sworn witnesses, and Carl Levin and Norman Coleman, chairman and ranking member respectively, may wish to inquire further. Mr. Levin may also wish to issue an apology to Mark Wallace, the then-U.S. diplomat responsible for blowing the lid off the UNDP's shenanigans. At a hearing last year, the senator hammered Mr. Wallace for saying that he suspected that the UNDP may have transferred $7 million to Pyongyang. It turns out Mr. Wallace's estimates were way too low.

But that's not all. The report also recounts how North Korea used U.N.-affiliated accounts to launder money, such as $2.72 million transferred to a company in Macau. It's unclear just whose money it was - UNDP's or North Korea's - and the report doesn't help much in clearing up that mystery. At the very least, the UNDP let itself be used by unscrupulous North Koreans.

The UNDP also appears to have played loose with the truth on transfers of dual-use technology. The panel found that the UNDP shipped 95 items that were "controlled by the U.S. for national security and anti-terrorism reasons." It did not obtain the export licenses required by U.S. law.

A year ago, the UNDP was dismissing allegations that it transferred dual-use technology: "[T]here have been some rice husk removers transferred and a plotter to help the [North Korean] authorities more accurately produce maps for environmental monitoring," a spokesman explained on April 26, 2007. A few weeks later he said, "The kind of equipment provided is by no means state of the art." In a letter dated June 7, 2007, the U.S. asked the UNDP to provide information about equipment with potential dual-use applications that it had obtained for North Korea. It received no response.

Finally, the UNDP is claiming exoneration for its treatment of the former UNDP staffer in Pyongyang who blew the whistle on the slipshod operations there. Again, the UNDP is being slippery with the truth. The report found no merit in Artjon Shkurtaj's claim that the UNDP retaliated against him for reporting the irregularities he saw in Pyongyang. But it also determined that without him the UNDP's misdeeds would never have come to light. Mr. Shkurtaj is still without a job.

The U.S. gives about $250 million a year to the UNDP in voluntary contributions, and it would be nice to think that in light of these latest revelations that it would take the occasion to rethink that. Sen. Coleman's office tells me he has drafted a letter to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice asking for cuts. Zalmay Khalilzad, U.S. ambassador to the U.N., declined to comment on the report.

The UNDP's executive board has a responsibility to make sure the agency provides better oversight of its programs - especially in countries where UNDP money might be used to help prop up dictators. At its meeting next week in Geneva, it could start by adopting a resolution requiring the agency to adhere to U.S. export-control laws. And it could require the UNDP to hire outside auditors to track UNDP disbursements. Allowing member states to see now-secret internal audits would help too.

Meanwhile, the spinmeisters at the UNDP keep declaring victory. Talk about chutzpah. Even New Yorkers aren't in their league. Only at the U.N., kids, only at the U.N.

Ms. Kirkpatrick is a deputy editor of the Journal's editorial page.

UNDP lied while under-oath at US Congressional Hearings...

PART 1 (Part 2 - will follow tomorrow)

We appreciate it and appreciate your good work generally at the GAO. Thank all your colleagues there for all the good they do, will you?
All right, we'll now move to our third panel.
We now welcome a final panel of witnesses from the United Nations who will brief the subcommittee on UNDP issues.
As mentioned earlier, we thank the United Nations for the extent of its voluntary cooperation with this inquiry.
We're very pleased this morning to have with us Frederick Tipson, who's the director of the U.N. Development Program's Liaison Office; David Lockwood, who is the deputy director of the Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific for the United Nations Development Program; David Morrison, director of communications for the U.N. Development Program; and Robert Benson, the director of the U.N. Ethics Office.
The subcommittee recognizes the privileges and immunities of the United Nations, and therefore this panel will not be sworn.
Again, gentlemen, we appreciate very much your being with us this morning, for the cooperation that you have shown with our staff and with us, and we welcome you to the subcommittee.
I think you were here when you heard our announcement about the timing system and about when the lights flash on and off.
We understand, Mr. Tipson, that you'll be presenting a brief statement for the United Nations Development Program, and so we will have you go first, followed by Mr. Benson, who will be presenting the briefing statement of the U.N. Ethics Office.
And then after these two statements, I gather it's your understanding that we would then proceed to questions. Is that acceptable?
Mr. Tipson, please proceed.

Thank you very much. As representatives of the U.N. Development Program, we appreciate the opportunity to address the issues raised by this subcommittee.
As employees of an international organization, we must appear informally and on a voluntary basis within the limits of the immunities recognized by the U.S. government, and we appreciate the subcommittee's willingness to accommodate these considerations.
Yet we also appear here willingly, with the objective of satisfying this committee that the funds provided to UNDP by the United States government are applied effectively to the purposes intended.
I am Fred Tipson, director of the Washington office. You've already introduced me and my colleagues. I'm going to limit my remarks to three main points.
First, we appreciate very much the professional manner in which your staff has reviewed UNDP operations in North Korea. We take the findings in this staff report very seriously and will consider as an organization how best to address each of the recommendations it contains.
At the same time, in light of the serious allegations about UNDP's operations that have appeared over the past year, it's really essential that we take note that this report does not substantiate any of the following claims.
UNDP did not transfer hundreds of millions of dollars to the North Korean government over the last 10 years.
UNDP's funds did not go for North Korean purchases of real estate, nuclear technology or missile programs.
And UNDP did not use cash in North Korea which could otherwise have been diverted or embezzled in circumvention of financial controls.
It's important as we address the other issues of concern to this subcommittee that we emphasize this point at the outset, given the visibility of those allegations in the media.
Second, our objective as an organization must be to satisfy the standards of our major government supporters, including the United States Congress in particular, that UNDP is sufficiently transparent and accountable to provide you with confidence in our operations wherever in the world they are.
If you are not satisfied with our performance in that regard, then we cannot be satisfied, and we must engage in a continuing process of review and improvement. And I appreciate the recognition that that's an objective on both sides.
I hope that our efforts to cooperate with this investigation have demonstrated our high level of commitment in that regard.
In fact, as the attachment to our statement makes clear, UNDP is often cited as a model among global organizations for its openness and reporting, and we pride ourselves on the substantial progress we have made in becoming a flexible, performance-driven, financially sound organization.
Nevertheless, we recognize that on two of the most important issues you have raised -- access to internal audits and whistleblower protections -- there are basic concerns, and we can address both of those here today.
On access to internal audits, I want to assure you that the head of UNDP, Kemal Dervis, has actually taken a leading role within the U.N. system to advocate a policy of greater access, and he is currently pursuing such a policy with our executive board. We can respond to further questions on that issue shortly.
I know you're also concerned about whether UNDP offers adequate protections to whistleblowers. I want to assure you that UNDP strongly encourages the reporting of wrongdoing and does offer protections on those who step forward to report it.
But I also want to assure you that in this area as well, Mr. Dervis has worked to support a more collaborative framework on ethics standards and procedures across the U.N. system, and we particularly look forward to working with Mr. Benson's office to assure a strengthened outcome.
Third, UNDP does operate in the most difficult locations in the world, as both of you senators have acknowledged. We have attached a short overview of the major programs we conduct in a set of the most challenging countries of particular interest to the U.S., including Afghanistan and Iraq.
To do so, we must apply considerable resourcefulness and discipline to assure that our funds and resources go to serve the needs of the people and not the narrower interests of particular leaders or elites.
North Korea is certainly a case in point. The subcommittee's report has it right. By all accounts, operating development projects in North Korea presented management and administrative challenges of the most extreme nature -- I'm quoting the report here.
"By definition, UNDP operates in challenging environments and has crafted, for the most part, sound rules and procedures to ensure that UNDP development funds benefit the people of the host nation."
But the report and Ambassador Khalilzad's testimony focus on three areas where our practices in North Korea diverge from our general policies in other countries. These involve practices required by the North Korean government as a condition of operating there.
These include the use of convertible currency rather than local currency, the hiring of local staff indirectly through the government, and the requirements regarding government oversight of visits to project sites.
Two points should be emphasized. First, there's nothing hidden about these practices. All three have been well known and permitted by all governments, including the United States, for nearly 30 years.
They continue to be the conditions under which all other international organizations, all foreign embassies and all NGOs operate in North Korea. They were not unique to UNDP and, in fact, are based on operational practices that were widespread in countries such as China and Vietnam until relatively recently.
UNDP is alone amongst organizations in North Korea to have moved to change the practices, and North Korean resistance to these changes was a factor in our decision to suspend our program there last spring.
While we know you have further questions about these issues, we were not comfortable having to operate in that situation, and we will do our best to address the considerations involved in those issues.
In closing, let me just offer a personal perspective on these matters. I worked for five years as counsel to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. I know firsthand the responsibilities you feel to assure that the international organizations supported by U.S. contributions can be relied on to do the important work they're committed to doing.
It is my full-time job to facilitate the transparency and accountability of UNDP to the U.S. government and to the Congress, and to you senators in particular.
And I hope you agree that our responsiveness to your investigation makes clear how seriously we take this responsibility. I thank you.

Thank you, Mr. Tipson.
Mr. Benson?

Thank you. Senators, this is the first opportunity I've had to appear before a U.S. Senate subcommittee. I welcome the opportunity.
I've been required to appear in order to brief this committee on the jurisdiction of the ethics office and the adequacy of whistleblower protection within the U.N. system.
We've also been requested to provide a written briefing statement, which we have done.
In accordance with the U.N. policy regarding U.N. officials required to appear before legislative bodies of member states, the secretary general has approved my attendance in order to provide information to this subcommittee, provided, as is indicated, it's achieved by means of a briefing session conducted on an informal basis.
The ethics office of the United Nations Secretariat was established and became operational on January 1, 2006, discharging its mandate as set out in the applicable secretary general bulletin.
On the 1st of May 2007, as you have indicated, I was appointed as the United Nations' first director of ethics. However, prior to that time -- I come to the United Nations with 17 years of public sector experience working at the federal level in Canada, and the last three years working for an independent office of the ethics commissioner, which was an entity of the parliament of Canada.
Myself personally, I'm a lawyer by training. And through my career, I've worked in the judge advocate general's branch of the Canadian armed forces. I worked in the federal department of justice where my client group at that time, my clients, were the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the security service.
And then at some point in time, I changed career paths and went into being a senior manager within the Canadian government, and finally I ended up my career working in the ethics commissioner's office in the parliament of Canada.
That ends my opening statement.

Thank you so much, Mr. Benson.
The U.S. has made requests for audit access relative to the North Korea issue, and they were not given what they asked for. Our U.N. representatives were denied the kind of access that they requested, and I'm just wondering why.

Mr. Chairman, just to clarify, I want to make clear that we understand -- we're here in part to understand, not simply to respond and defend.


We understand the importance of the objective of facilitating access to member states of the audits. As I just indicated, we're leading the charge in trying to get that policy adopted, not only in UNDP but in other parts of the United Nations.
It's a policy that has to be approved by our executive board. We have a board of 36 countries. And so it's not a matter of simply taking a pen and changing the policy overnight.
And I can tell you that this very week our leader is in the process of trying to propose that that policy be adopted.

Are you privy to the reasons for the policy?

Well, I'm going to defer to one of my colleagues here who has much more experience dealing with audits.
But let me just say on the basis of experience in the private sector for the last 23 years that audits are a key way in which boards keep track of the honesty of what they're getting from all the parts of the organization.
But one of the things that audits need to accomplish is to verify the validity of the systems that the organization uses to report the numbers, the funds, what happens to the money in those organizations.
And the concern with the way Ambassador Wallace characterized the situation is that if the U.S. government cannot rely on the representation of UNDP with respect to key financial issues -- they simply will not take what we say as being reliable information, unless there is somehow an independent audit of that information, then it's a very difficult way to have a relationship, and it's really very rare that governments take that position or that that becomes the style with which we have to exchange information.
As your staff will tell you, we have taken them through, in sometimes exhaustive detail, what our systems do and how they are structured to accomplish them. And the audits that have occurred would have shown up if those systems were not reliable, if that were, indeed, the case.
So I know that doesn't fully respond to the question you asked, and I'll ask my colleague to try to get into the question of why there's a tendency to want to limit access to audits.

OK, which...

Mr. Morrison.

Mr. Morrison?