"....The staff is sick and tired of the impunity extended by the office of the Secretary-General to senior managers for their failings especially in situations where it has led to death and disability....."
- UN Staff Union
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
U.N. Secretary Ban Ki-moon is Scrambling to Release a New Cost-Saving Agenda, Ahead of Re-Elections
Sept. 23: President Obama gives a toast at a lunch hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, right, during the 65th session of the U.N. General Assembly at U.N. headquarters.
By George Russell
Published March 23, 2011
U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is suddenly scrambling to roll out a new “agenda for change” at the U.N. this spring -- an agenda that also saves money -- before he must seek re-election as head of the world organization next fall.
The agenda seems aimed to blunt two major criticisms of his first, five-year term of office: that he has done little to improve the performance of the organization, and that he has not reined in its rapidly ballooning costs -- indeed, he has become the U.N.’s spender-in-chief.
Ban’s abrupt change of course may have gotten some prodding from President Obama, who met with Ban at the White House on Feb. 28. At the time, according to U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice, the two men “discussed their shared agenda to build on the strengths of theUnited Nations while pursuing and implementing very important management reforms as well as budgetary discipline.”
Ban unveiled the idea of his new agenda not long afterward, at an “extraordinary meeting” with his top lieutenants in the U.N. Secretariat on March 15, according to a follow-up letter dated the next day, which has been examined by Fox News.
In the letter, Ban’s deputy, Asha-Rose Migiro, encapsulated the previous day’s session by declaring that “we agreed on the urgent need to find ways to do more with less.” She then repeated Ban’s demand from the session that top managers “submit concrete proposals for modernizing our operations, identifying efficiency gains, and equipping our staff with state-of-the-art skills” by no later than March 28.
Those ideas will then be chewed over by top level U.N. policy and management committees at a joint meeting under Ban’s direction in late April. “The joint committee meeting will produce an agenda for change that we will all work together to implement,” Migiro said.
The focus will be on “delivering more, on becoming a stronger and more effective organization as well as ensuring long-term cost-containment.”
Drastic cost containment is very much in the cards for the U.N., especially after the huge environmental and nuclear catastrophe that has stricken Japan, the organization’s second-biggest donor (after the U.S.) in previous weeks. Japan’s disaster, which will require hundreds of billions of dollars in recovery costs, came atop Europe's fiscal meltdown, which has also strained the resources of major donor countries.
And then there is the U.S. itself, where the White House is on a collision course with the Republican-dominated House of Representatives over runaway spending -- and where generous, unconditional U.S. funding for the U.N. has come under sustained fire from House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Iliana Ros-Lehtinen.
As Fox News revealed last week, Ban has issued a call to the same subordinates for suggestions on how to achieve a “painful” 3 percent cut in the Secretariat’s regular budget for the next two years that would, essentially, leave spending exactly where it left off at the end of 2011.
Ban’s new “reform and strengthening” plan tells top managers to focus on five areas: staffing, budgetary “cost containment over time,” improving business processes through high-tech means, “rationalizing structures” and “engaging member states on closer alignment between mandates and support provided for them.”
The last two points are possibly the most drastic, depending on the ideas offered. “Rationalizing structures” appears to be an oblique reference to bureaucratic streamlining, and few doubt that the U.N. could accommodate a lot of that. “Closer alignment” between U.N. mandates and money points to a longstanding fact of U.N. existence: that only a relative handful of countries, led by the U.S., provide the bulk of U.N. finances, while 192 members, most of them contributing a relative pittance, decide how the money should be spent.
Migiro’s letter on behalf of her boss calls for “bold and forward-looking” suggestions, and a “fresh injection of ideas,” and urges top managers to “draw on the creativity and ideas of your staff.” Ban’s much more charismatic predecessor, Kofi Annan, offered up sweeping and extensive reform proposals before the end of his second term, and the result is the organization Ban now runs.
When it comes to technological fixes, the U.N. track record is equally dismal. A high-tech “enterprise resource planning” system known as Umoja was supposed to be ready next year, but the project, originally budgeted for about $286 million, is tens of millions over budget. Umoja this summer was mired in a procurement scandal and is now not expected to be ready before the end of 2013.
Any “bold and forward-looking” ideas that Ban gets will also face a familiar policy grinder. As Migiro’s letter states, they will be compiled, then returned to their originators for comment. Then they will go to a joint meeting of Ban’s policy and management committees in late April, which will, she says, “produce an agenda for change that we will all work together to implement.”
In fact, Ban, who is notoriousness for his secretiveness and closed decision-making style, may also have an alternative process in mind.
Migiro’s letter closes with the observation that alongside the bulky but relatively open suggestion routine, “the Secretary General will form a small change management team composed of specific staff members who have relevant expertise” to “support this process.”
In other words, a small group of insiders may still run the show.
By whatever process he chooses to give birth to it, however, Ban’s instant “agenda for change” will still face the same question: after years of unimpressive, expensive results from the same management, how will it avoid being more of the same?
637 UNDP Staffers are Millionaires, and another 1041 UNDP staffers have enough salary (income) to justify million dollar homes in New York (or tri-state area NY/NJ/CT).
UN/UNDP's budgets are untransparent !
U.N. budget is “utterly opaque, untransparent and completely in the shadow” and would benefit from being consolidated and audited from the outside. MMB from NyTimes
JOSE RAMOS HORTA - PRESIDENT OF EAST TIMOR
‘‘You know how many layers of bureaucracy there are when the European Union wants to help East Timor? Well, they don’t provide the funds to us, the funds allocated are managed by world bank. And the world bank has its own layers of bureaucracy. And they charge for that. The project is then managed by UNDP. But UNDP is only good at doing studies, they don’t execute projects.’‘
Boutros Boutros-Ghali on UN:
"perhaps half of the UN work force does nothing useful"
Can Helen Clark be trusted on Climate Change ?
President Obama's answer to Helen Clark's appeal for US to do more on climate change was : "I think the American people right now have been so focused, and will continue to be focused, on our economy and jobs and growth that ... if the message is somehow, we're going to ignore jobs and growth simply to address climate change, I don't think anybody's gonna go for that," he said. "I won't go for that."
In 2011 Rami Makhlouf - a trusted development partner of UNDP in Syria
In 2008 U.S. Treasury designation: Rami Makhluf Designated for Benefiting from Syrian Corruption (Click on photo to see US Treasury page)
"Screwed" How Foreign Countries Are Ripping America Off
A full chapter (7) dedicated to UNDP and UN Secretariat. But it today at Amazon.com (click above picture)
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Asma al-Assad is UNDP's champion of reform in Syria
UNDP's special relations with dictators and terror is well documented. Yet, they continue to operate covered by UN Immunity. Click on immage for story.
Aicha Gaddafi You are Fired !
UNDP continues to be in bed with other dictators. Will clean it one at a time.
Where is NETAID money David Morrison?
UNDP Transparency Censored
UNDP's moto is: - eliminate the uncomfortable, frighten those who disagree, "educate" the perplexed..
UNDP Chief Finance Officer
The UNDP is a secretive organization and so far has kept in the dark every information related to its Chief Finance Officer and Deputy Assistant Administrator, Mr. Darshak Shah. Click on the picture for more on Finance Office of UNDP.
UNDP Belarus - best breast corner
Should tax-payers dollars be used to photograph beautiful breasts - even when making a valid point?
Uncle Helen turning UNDP into a cove of corrupt NZ labour politicians
CLICK ON PICTURE TO SEE Chris Carter's latest Credit Card scandal - can he work at UNDP after that? It seems YES he is full tested!!
Helen Clark says: "No more cars"
Thinking about buying a new car this year? Why, you evil Westerner! You don’t need that. You are demanding your new car off the sweat, toil, and exploitation of the world’s poorest people in developing countries.
Eveline Herfkens belongs to Jail - she should return imemdiately Dutch Taxpayers money.
if anyone else would have done what Eveline Herfkens did, would have long been in jail. We denounce this impunity and demand justice.
Andrew Mitchell - says Helen Clark is up to no good!
1. UNDP’s partnership with the World Bank needs to be more effective, particularly in fragile and crisis-affected countries. 2. UNDP’s near universal mandate means its technical resources are spread very thinly. The Board does not provide strategic direction. HR management is weak. It has a weak results chain. 3. There is limited evidence of active senior management consideration of cost control. Country evidence points to mixed progress on demonstrating cost-efficiency. 4. The Executive Board is politicised and there is a lack of consensus on the key areas for reform. It is not clear that current plans for change will deliver the required depth and breadth of reform. 5. Evidence gathered at country level was highly critical of UNDP’s ability to deliver results. Its delivery can be undermined by staffing issues and bureaucratic processes. 6. Its performance in fragile states is mixed. It has reasonable training and a range of guidance and analytical tools but struggles to fill posts. 7. There is no evidence that the Climate Strategy was directly guiding resource allocation decisions
Mark Malloch Brown outraged over Aicha Gaddafi
“I hope she's not a UNDP Ambassador,” ...“I don't think it's UNDP. I was surprised when I saw that... she was an Ambassador to any part of the UN system.”
Travel Palestine - Rediscover Your Senses
Get ready to a sensual feast of ...sounds...scents of The Land of حماس Ḥamās Documentary sponsored by UNDP Funds (click on picture for video)
Helen Clark on UNDP's own corruption (Can she be trusted?)
“When funds intended for life-saving treatment and prevention are stolen, that theft is tantamount to murder.” CLICK ON PICTURE FOR MORE
Scandal in Rwanda with Human Development Report
Aurelien Agbenonci, UNDP's RR in Kigali accuses Khalid Malik of making up data without UNDP Rwanda's knowledge. Rwanda Government is unhappy !!!
H.E. Dirk Niebel - German Development Minister
"I take the accusations made in the media concerning corruption and breach of fiduciary duty at the Global Fund very seriously and I am sure that the Fund will clarify the matter without delay. Germany is one of the biggest donors to the Global Fund. I have therefore seen to it that a special review will be held. I have frozen all further disbursements to the Fund until matters have been fully clarified, and I will ask a representative of the Fund to come to the BMZ to discuss the matter."
US Amb. Joseph Torsella blows the whistle on UN budgets
U.N. Secretariat’s proposed $5.2 “regular” budget for 2012-2013, was “simply loosening our belt a little less than we originally planned.”
The U.N. Exposed
How the United Nations Sabotages America's Security and Fails the World (Click in picture to purchase the book)
Share now information about illegal dealings at United Nations
If you are in possession of UNDP or any other United Nations Agency' contracts, correspondence, financial records or databases, which you believe detail wrongdoing such as fraud, mismanagement and abuse of authority, and you have failed to have UN's internal control, oversight and justice systems respond and/or react to your claims, you can send them to UNDP-WATCH and we will make them public keeping your identity anonymous and confidential.
Send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Helen Clark is watching you!
Gaddafi aint got nothing on UNDP - Click on the picture for more!
Malakia: A Turk advises Greece on Economy
Kemal Dervis (Turkish) and George Papandreou (Greek) share many late-night phone calls together (Click on picture to read story)
Where does Ban stand on Libya?
C'est vraiment ce que tu veux pour ta carriere?
United Nations Dispute Tribunal finds Ethics Office decisions Appealable
Because UNDT is the first level of the UN’s two-tiered justice system, there is a possibility that this decision may be appealed. Hopefully, the Secretary-General will not be “absurd” enough to do so. Click above to go to GAP page.
Andrew Mitchell Demands Transparency from United Nations
And I promise you as well that in future, when it comes to international development, we will want to see hard evidence of the impact your money makes. Not just dense and impenetrable budget lines but clear evidence of real effect
YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT UNITED NATIONS
Ban Ki Moon supports Ethics Decision on UNDP North Korea
Question: He recommends strongly that UNDP pays 14 months back pay to the whistleblower. Does the Secretary-General stand behind that recommendation? Should UNDP in fact pay that money, or are they free to rebuff that recommendation? Spokesperson: We will see what is going to happen. The Secretary-General of course is behind Mr. Benson on his report. There is no doubt about it. What UNDP will do, we will be seeing this; how they will implement that report.
UNDP Watch is a grouping of United Nations Staff committed to openness. We believe that everyone has the right to access information held by United Nations.
Despite a stated commitment to openness, UNDP remain a highly secretive agency.
Although a wealth of information is available on some UNDP websites, its Executive Board operate behind closed doors, much important programme and administrative information is never made available and, as a rule, information that is disclosed is provided only after relevant decisions have effectively been taken.
While UNDP has adopted “internal policies” on information disclosure, they in fact operate on precisely the opposite presumption. For the most part, they list which documents will be disclosed and when, and there is a presumption against the disclosure of all the other information they hold. They do not establish right of access, the lists of documents subject to disclosure is limited, they do not set out clear and narrow grounds for refusing access and they do not provide for independent oversight mechanisms to ensure proper implementation of the policy.
The UNDP WATCH is calling for the complete overhaul of these policies.
"...We believe that without accountability, there is impunity. We ask that you (Secretary General) not be complicit in cover-up of what happened prior to 11 Dec attack. The staff is sick and tired of the impunity extended by the office of the Secretary-General to senior managers for their failings especially in situations where it has led to death and disability."