"....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 7, 2012
GAP: IDB Whistleblower case leads to shady dealings going public (UNDP's Grynspan involvement detailed)
So ethics guru Bernardo Kliksberg is back in the news. On March 1, FOX News' George Russell published a detailed piece about Kliksberg’s peculiar departure from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) in January 2007, just before the Social Capital and Ethics Initiative “coordinated” by him ran completely out of steam. The Norwegian and Canadian Governments funded this effort, and a whistleblower at the IDB disclosed repeated and costly ethical violations by Kliksberg, using the funds of the initiative.
It seems that Kliksberg, the author of More Ethics, More Development, among other treatises, is himself guilty of diverting funds from the IDB’s ethics initiative.
Russell’s piece reports that the IDB then repaid the Norwegian and Canadian Trust Fund for the amount Kliksberg demonstrably diverted: $109,000, equivalent to half of the funds available for the initiative in 2006. After that, the cone of silence descended around the Kliksberg affair, and it remains concealed beneath highly improbable and contradictory official statements. It only came to light because the whistleblower brought suit in the IDB’s internal tribunal. She protested the loss of her job, which the IDB tried to represent as the inevitable consequence of the demise of the Ethics Initiative.
The failure of the IDB to protect the whistleblower in this case sent a terrible message to Bank staff: if your whistleblowing causes an interruption of your project, your job will be the first casualty of your disclosure. That should pretty much shut down everyone with any survival instinct at the IDB, no?
For his part, Kliksberg simply caught the Acela to New York and assumed control of another international trust fund. That would be the fund contributed so generously to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) by Spanish taxpayers through the Government of Spain. Established in April 2007, the Spain-UNDP Trust Fund held $62 million by 2009. (Just a heads up, UNDP people: you need to keep a close eye on those deposits. In our experience dealing with corruption, the diversion of funds tends to be a lifestyle, not an incident).
Despite the rhetorical commitments to transparency and accountability with which the IDB decorates its website, this episode is shrouded in secrecy and stinks of institutional cover-up. Kliksberg contends that Bank management never told him he was under investigation and never informed him he was found guilty as charged. Nor did the IDB inform UNDP, claims UNDP. But not informing Kliksberg that he was under investigation and later censured violates the procedures of the IDB’s internal justice system in ways that even the Bank – which is notoriously cavalier about adhering to its own anti-corruption regulations – would hesitate to try.
Now, I'm not saying this couldn’t have happened. After all, stealing from an ethics trust fund is also a violation of something, and rather than making Kliksberg repay Norway and Canada, the IDB coughed up the money out of its own public coffers. This decision had the effect – whether intentional or not – of removing the fraud from the public record by depriving the governments of a cause of action.
But Kliksberg told Russell that the IDB conducted an extensive investigation, and the only result was a note in his file advising anyone considering a contract for him to first consult with the Human Resources Department. So…
Question One: How did the IDB conduct a thorough investigation of the Trust Fund deficits without asking Kliksberg himself about his financial practices (and without freezing his access to funds and his e-mail account)?
Question Two: Did Kliksberg’s stature as an Ethics Expert allow him to escape sanction for ethics violations involving the Trust Fund?
Question Three: Why would the IDB not inform the Spanish Government about the risk Kliksberg represented to the integrity of its Trust Fund at UNDP if he were hired to manage it?
Nothing about the official steps taken by the IDB makes sense, from an accountability perspective. After Kliksberg took down the Social Capital and Ethics Initiative at the IDB, the Bank took steps to ensure that there was no record of what had happened – no letter outlining Kliksberg’s ethical violations and misconduct in the HR files, and no judicial action against him either in Washington, Norway or Canada. The only record of what happened is the letter to the Norwegian and Canadian Governments committing the IDB to repaying the trust fund.
The Ethics Committee concluded that there was sufficient evidence to establish that the former Technical advisor for the Fund violated certain provision of the Bank’s Code of Ethics. The former Technical Advisor [Kliksberg], a Fund consultant, was found to have used employees hired with Fund resources to perform work in furtherance of his personal endeavors. Based on these conclusions, the Bank did not renew his contract and his employment at the Bank has, therefore, ended.
This letter, of course, was not intended to see the light of day. And if not for a whistleblower claim and an intensive investigation by a journalist, it wouldn’t have. Nevertheless, with reference to accountability at the IDB, the Bank website has this to say:
The Inter-American Development Bank has developed a major overhaul of its anti-corruption framework to ensure that allegations of corruption in Bank financed activities are investigated and sanctioned more quickly, and whistleblowers enjoy stronger protections than before. The IDB is also strengthening the support it provides to countries to battle corruption.
But hey! In this particular case, the whistleblower lost her job and got paid something for her trouble only after more than two years without work. In contrast, the guilty party enjoyed the privilege of confidentiality provided by the Bank to protect his reputation in spite of his own thievery. The simple fact here: the IDB ensured that an unscrupulous consultant enjoyed strong protections, while the whistleblower was abandoned, and a trust fund at the IDB as well as another fund at UNDP were left for him to use at his discretion.
Outstanding. But here’s some consolation: at least someone got protection. Too bad it wasn’t the whistleblower.
Bea Edwards is Executive Director and International Director for the Government Accountability Project, the nation's leading whistleblower protection and advocacy organization.
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: email@example.com
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."