This report is protected under the provisions of paragraph 18 of ST/SGB/273 of 7 September 1994
OIOS ASSESSMENT MISSION REPORT
The risks for fraud and violations of the United Nations Staff Regulations and Rules in the United Nations tsunami disaster relief programmes in Indonesia and Sri Lanka
1. This document reports on the assessment mission carried out in Jakarta and Aceh province in the Island of Sumatra, Republic of Indonesia between 17 February and 2 March 2005 by the Investigations Division of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) following discussions, both actual and virtual, with colleagues responsible for investigative activities in United Nations agencies as to how we might jointly address the potential for fraud and corruption in what promises to be a long-term project for the United Nations. The purpose of this mission was to assess the potential for fraud, misconduct, mismanagement, abuse of authority, waste of resources and other violations of the United Nations Regulations and Rules with respect to the resources and staff of the United Nations and others and who are currently deployed and involved on behalf of the United Nations in the Tsunami Disaster relief, rehabilitation and development programmes [TDR]. It was not intended to be an investigation but was designed to provide a means for estimating the potential opportunities for fraud and other abuses to occur; for determining how complaints of wrongdoing can be made in the environment; for ascertaining the critical persons and entities involved in TDR who are those who may be able to identify possible problems and to assist in solving them; and finally, for seeking local advice for preventive and response actions.
2. This document reports on information that was collected and provides analysis of the information as well as descriptions of potential risk scenarios. It also proposes recommendations as to how such risks can be mitigated or even avoided.3. OIOS had initiated early consultations in January 2005 with agency investigative oversight offices, notably UNDP, UNICEF, UNHCR and WFP as well as the World Bank and OLAF/EC to establish a working group which would be able to consider how we might ensure appropriate investigative responses as required. It was agreed that an assessment mission was needed and should be conducted as soon as possible so that necessary measures could be undertaken to prevent fraud and to detect it early where it does occur. Due to other commitments, none of the other agencies’ oversight personnel who were invited were able to join the OIOS team (of two investigators) who undertook the mission. Nevertheless, upon return, the head of the team from OIOS provided briefings to interested agencies in both New York and Geneva. The feedback from those sessions is incorporated into this report.