By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Series
UNITED NATIONS, August 18 -- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's “Special Envoy For Disaster Risk Reduction and Water” Han Seung-Soo is listed on the board of directors of South Korean firm Doosan and of Standard Chartered Bank- both of which do business with the UN, including banking business. Was this approved by Ban Ki-moon? Now it seems Yes. But should it have been?
Especially when, as now, it is exposed that Doosan has billion dollar business with Saudi Arabia, to whose money Ban deferred in dropping the Saudi-led Coalition from the UN's Children and Armed Conflict Yemen annex? This is Ban's UN: see Inner City Press first-draft 47-minute film here, "Banning the Press: Corruption in the UN of Ban Ki-moon, John Ashe and Ng Lap Seng, Yemen." And now, Part II: "BANning Transparency," here.
While the UN claims Ban Ki-moon urges his officials to make public financial disclosure, now Ban has allowed the names of the officials who refuse to make any disclosure to no longer even be mentioned on the list of officials.
For example, while in 2013 Herve Ladsous the head of peacekeeping was listed, and said he was maintaining confidentiality, in 2015 he is not listed at all.
On August 18, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Farhan Haq about the continued decline of transparency under Ban, Vine here, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: you've referred a couple times in recent days to the idea of… of public financial disclosure by… by officials. And I've seen on the website that Ban Ki-moon says that he urges his officials to do it, but, of course, it's not required. That I understand. But, what I've noticed is that until recently, in previous years, there's been a list of all officials. And if you click some names, it says, "I choose not to disclose." For 2015, the most recent year, the officials who don't disclose aren't even listed. So, it seems like it's a step back. And I wanted to know, for example, Mr. Hervé Ladsous was listed in 2013 as declining to disclose. He's the head of peacekeeping, as you know. I don't know how the urging of Ban Ki-moon resulted in that. But, in 2015 he's not even on the list. So, maybe you know or you can ask them, how is it decided to drop the names from the list of officials who choose not to disclose? Because it makes it even more opaque, obviously, because you can't even tell that they didn't disclose. They're not listed, unless you do cross-reference back…
Deputy Spokesman: No, well, you know who the officials of the UN are. They either choose to make their disclosure on a voluntary basis or not. That is their decision. However, regardless of whether they make it public or not, they do make disclosures to the UN, and those are reviewed.
ICP Question: Right. Was it specific… was it a change in policy, from all the years, 2000… for example, Mr. [Mathew] Nimetz appears in 2007, but he doesn't appear in 2015. Mr. Han [Seung-soo] doesn't appear. So, who decided… I guess it's the ethics… on whose authority was it decided to make it less opaque which officials are not following Ban Ki-moon's ostensible urging to disclose?
Deputy Spokesman: Well, like I said, there's still financial… the public financial disclosures are still available, and that's the basic point. If they choose to make them public, they're available on the website.
The conflicts of interest allowed by Ban Ki-moon in his UN are extensive. Today's example is Matthew Nimetz, Ban's Personal Envoy for the talks between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).
Nimetz is Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer of General Atlantic LLC which, among other things, has invested in Studio Moderna Holdings B.V., a for-profit company that operates in FYROM. This is Ban's UN. It doesn't even answer. On August 17, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Farhan Haq, Vine here, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: I want to ask you about a financial seeming conflict of interest that goes… that, hopefully, they'll actually say whether they've approved it or not. And it has to do with the Special Envoy… the Secretary-General's personal envoy on the talks between Greece and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Mr. [Mathew] Nimetz. It is part of his public disclosure that he's a principal in General Atlantic, but what's not said there is that this company invests in Studio Moderna, which is a for-profit company which lists itself as doing business in [former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia]. So… or Macedonia, as it calls it. So, I wonder, how can a UN… how can a negotiator be a principal, not just on the board of directors, but actively work in a fund that has an investment somewhere between $50 and $500 million in a company doing business in the country in which he's mediating? Is that… so, I want… I guess what I'm asking you for is a substantive answer rather than the same answer that they… they check these things and restrictions are… is there any restriction on this in some way?
Deputy Spokesman: The basic point is that the nature of their disclosures is that all participants have the voluntary right to make public disclosures. Beyond that, they are disclosures that are shared with the Ethics Office and those are of a confidential nature. Therefore, I cannot go into the details.
ICP Question: Right, but from the outside, can you see why some people would say this has the appearance of a conflict of interest to have a financial stake in a country you're mediating around?
Deputy Spokesman: What I can say is the Ethics Office works specifically with officials to make sure that there is none.
ICP Question: What about appearance? This is what… the World Bank says…
Deputy Spokesman: Yes, Linda?
With Ban Ki-moon's spokespeople refusing to answer basic questions -- and instead accusing the Press of “bullying” for asking -- Inner City Press on August 15 reported that and asked Ban Ki-moon's spokesman about that Ban's Special Envoy for Road Safety Jean Todt is simultaneously listed on the board of directors of Groupe Lucien Barrière SAS, whose businesses include casinos, luxury hotels, restaurants, and bars in France and Switzerland, and online poker in France.
Ban's Special Envoy Todt is also listed on the board of directors ofGaumont SA which “produces and distributes films and television programming, operates movie screens and publishes 'Le Point' news magazine and has as subsidiaries Gaumont Production, Cinemas de l'Est, and Societe d'Exploitation des Cinemas Angevins.
There was previous push back on Formula 1, including as relates toBahrain and Todt's comments about the Paris terrorist attack - but Ban's “Road Safety” representative on the board of directors of a for-profit company owning bars?
On August 15, Inner City Press asked Ban's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, Beyond the Vine video here, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: I'd asked you how many other boards Mr. Han Seung-soo is on that do business with the UN, and you seemed to not answer that. I wanted to ask you about… there's another special… given that you won't answer that, there's another special… the Special Envoy on road safety, Mr. Jean Todt. According to public records, he's on the board of a group, Lucien Barrière, which… whose businesses include bars and online poker. And what I wanted to know is, first, I guess, just factually, whether the Ethics Office has signed off on these two outside board… there's another board that he's on that's movie theaters. But, the contradiction between road safety and being on a for-profit board of a company that runs bars seems extraordinary. So, I wanted to know, has the Ethics Office signed off on this? And will the UN live up to what the World Bank says, which is that outside board memberships by… by its officials are made public as a matter of course to avoid the appearance of conflicts of interest?
Deputy Spokesman: I've explained to you how the Ethics Office goes about this in general, and I'll look into what specifically they're doing about Jean Todt.
Twenty four hours later, from the podium, Haq read this: "I was asked yesterday about any disclosures made by Jean Todt, who serves as a Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Road Safety and holds a dollar-a-year contract. I can say that he is in compliance with the UN’s disclosure of interest requirements, including the disclosure of his non-UN activities.
In receiving the Secretary-General’s approval for non-UN activities with conditions, Mr. Todt has been informed of related restrictions for his non-UN activities in order to prevent and manage conflicts of interest. Under applicable Staff Regulations and UN policies, disclosure statements are confidential and will be accessible to and used by the Secretary-General, the Ethics Office or by offices or persons specifically authorized in writing by the Secretary-General. Public disclosure is voluntary. And that is it from me."
Inner City Press asked, Vine here, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: I wanted to ask you about this Jean Todt thing, because yesterday, what I was asking about was not just a possible financial conflict of interest, but the idea of sort of a thematic conflict of interest, in the sense that the company he's on the board of, publicly listed, owns bars, and he's the Special Envoy for Road Safety. So, I wanted to know, is it within the Ethics Office mandate to look at this type of thematic contradiction, or are they simply looking for possible either… either conflict of interest in contracting with the UN? Do they look at speeches given by envoys, where companies that they're with can make money? How… I just… I want to know what kind of restrictions they're imposing.
Deputy Spokesman: I brought what you'd said to their attention, and this is their reply. ...
Inner City Press: I want to ask you… and I want to try to, I guess, do it in a generic way, about the staffing of the PGA's [President of the General Assembly] office. When a PGA comes in and brings in his own… his or her own people to… and makes them UN staff for the year, does this make them UN staff, i.e., they're in the system and then get promoted from there? And I'm asking because at least in… in… about a particular case of a John Ashe personal assistant who came in and then became the assistant to Ms. Catherine Pollard, who is now working in the Executive Office of the Secretary-General. And the question is, is this a sort of a backdoor way in? What is the status… does… does… and I ask it because also Mr. [Mogens] Lykketoft has brought in a speechwriter. This is a question that arose in this room. Is the expectation when somebody becomes a UN staff member for the year of a PGA service that at the end of the year they're back just like any other person trying to enter the UN system, or have they effectively entered the UN system simply by being tapped by the PGA?
Deputy Spokesman: No. I mean, they can apply for UN jobs after they've finished their time. And some of them, as you noticed, have applied for UN jobs. But, they can go back to national service or UN jobs. It goes either way.
ICP Question: But, they're not… they don't have a leg up on people that are not already in the UN system or do they?
Deputy Spokesman: I wouldn't call it a leg up. They have experience in the system. That is something in itself. But, beyond that, they're not part of the system inherently.
ICP Question: Given the John Ashe case, can you say, maybe not now, but at some point later today or, I guess, tomorrow from the podium, how many staff members brought in by John Ashe, given that, may he rest in peace, he was charged with bribery at the UN, now currently work in the UN system?
Deputy Spokesman: I wouldn't be aware of that, depending upon where they had gone. I mean, obviously, some of them may be in the system. Some have gone back to national service. Vine here.
Han Seung-soo is a UN public official, and it is now demonstrated that he sits on at least two "boards of companies with profit-making arms" with which the UN has awarded contracts during Han's UN public service. Some of these contracts, such as the global banking contract cited in a UN document in April 2016, are substantial.
On August 12, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: I'll speak and then I'll be sure to be quiet. Have you verified to your own satisfaction that Han Seung-soo is listed on the website of Standard Chartered Bank as an independent outside… on the board of directors and that Standard Chartered Bank has not only the brokerage contract but also a master servicing contract, and how is it consistent with any pla… any legitimate conflict-of-interest rules that a person can be in both of these capacities at once?
Deputy Spokesman Haq: I've been in touch with the Ethics Office. They are satisfied with the cooperation that they're receiving, and I've provided the details that we have about the cooperation that they've been receiving from Han Seung-soo.
This Ban Ki-moon / UN spokesman is trying to say that Han has been given waivers to sit on outside boards. But this is contrary to best practices as documented by other public organizations.
Can the UN say with a straight face that the waivers given to Han by his former protege, Ban Ki-moon, are appropriate and are in the spirit of the standards promoted by for example the World Bank and the OECD?
The World Bank, with which Ban cavorts, says "the declaration of interests program for the Bank Group’s Senior Management Team and Vice Presidents includes public disclosure of summaries of their annual declarations of interests. Public disclosure of this information helps demonstrate to stakeholders that, in the discharge of their official duties and responsibilities, the Bank Group’s senior managers are not, and do not appear to be, influenced by any consideration associated with their own private interests."
Ban has refused to disclose which boards Han is on; the two Inner City Press has identified each certainly show the appearance of conflict of interest, and the thing itself.
The OECD notes for example that "Germany’s policy also requires federal Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries of State to restrict their non-ministerial activities. The following activities are forbidden by the law for federal Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries of State while they are in office:
-Occupying another salaried office.
-Practising another profession or commercial occupation.
-Acting as a paid arbitrator or undertaking a consultant activity outside the courts.
-Holding an honorary public position, without government permission.
In general the law also prohibits sitting on boards or supervisory boards of companies with profit-making aims."
Has is on two such boards, Inner City Press has identified; Jane Holl Lute on another, for $250,000 a year.
As Inner City Press first reported and asked about on August 11, Han Seung-soo is on the board of directors of Standard Chartered bank, awarded the UN's master banking services contract (see this UN document, at Paragraph 50), and a brokerage contract (UN Procurement website, here).
When Inner City Press asked about this and how many OTHER board Han is on that do business with the UN, Ban's spokesman Farhan Haq cut off the questions and claimed Inner City Press was “bullying” him.Video here; UN Transcript here:
Inner City Press: Mr. Han Seung-soo is also on the board of Standard Chartered Bank, which was awarded, according to the… the most recent report of the… on the Chief Executive Board's proceedings, Standard Chartered Bank was awarded the UN's master servicing banking contract. So I wanted to know… I mean, this is why I think I was asking for kind of a more comprehensive response from the Ethics Office in terms of what restrictions they've placed on Mr. Han Seung-soo, because if, as is reflected by the bank's website, he's on the board of a bank that, in fact, has this major contract with the UN, can you please describe to me what possible restrictions deal with this?
Deputy Spokesman: I've described to you how the Ethics Office's guidelines work and that those guidelines apply to Mr. Han Seung-soo. He has engaged and informed them of a number of his business dealings, and they have taken those into account.
ICP Question: How can you be on the board of a… of a… of a bank that has a con… you just made a point of pointing out that Doosan, although it's listed in procurement contract… procurement database, didn't have contracts during this particular period of time. But if… I'm… I'm informing you that the Chief Executive Board's report said that Standard Chartered Bank has this contract with the UN, and he's on their board. So is he still on their board, or is he somehow half on their board?
Deputy Spokesman: I've described to you what the series of procedures are, and those are what applies to him as well as to other special advisers.
ICP Question: So how is…
Deputy Spokesman: We're not going to interfere with their own outside-of-UN lives by going into all of their details at great length, but the Ethics Office has been dealing with this, and they have a series of guidelines, and he's aware of them and is in compliance…
ICP Question: How can you be on a board of a corporation…?
Deputy Spokesman: You keep interrupting me.
ICP Question: All right. I'm asking because I see you already looking away, and I want… this is a very simple question.
Deputy Spokesman: I'm looking at someone else who is raising a hand. But, please, behave yourself. You need to understand that when someone is asking a question, you allow them to answer. I've actually lost my train of thought. So I'll have to gain it…
ICP Question: I'm asking… I'm willing to because I have a follow-up question…
Deputy Spokesman: Because the continued interruptions… you're doing it again… actually break people's train of thought. He has been in touch with the Ethics Office. And, like I said, they have a series of remedies for the steps which I've detailed. Beyond that, this is what we have.
ICP Question: What other boards is he on? That's my follow-up question.
Deputy Spokesman: Matthew, Matthew…
ICP Question: It's simple. It's simple, because he's on the board of a bank that does business with the UN… I'm finishing my question. You're cutting me off.
Deputy Spokesman: No…
ICP Question: My question is, how many corporate boards that do business with the UN…
Deputy Spokesman: Matthew, when I start to say something in reply to your question and then you cut me off, then don't accuse me of cutting you off.
ICP Question: Right, you tried to call on someone else, and I was asking another question. How many boards is Han Seung-soo on that do business with the UN?
Deputy Spokesman: At this stage, you're actually just trying to bully me. To be honest, I've given you a wealth of information about this, including details about how the Ethics Office goes about it. That's what we've got. Yes. Carole?
As noted, Han Seung-soo is also on the board of Standard Chartered Bank - which was recently awarded the UN's master banking services contract:
“Early in 2016, the master banking services agreement between the Secretariat and Standard Chartered Bank will be the first such global contract to be signed, enabling United Nations system entities to access banking and treasury services in 28 countries from Standard Chartered Bank and its subsidiaries.” (undocs.org/E/2016/56)
So Ban Ki-moon and his Ethics Office let Ban's mentor and adviser Han Seung-soo serve as UN Special Adviser for Water and Disaster Risk Reduction and give speeches in that capacity while Doosan, on whose board Han sits, sells water desalinization equipment to the same countries he speaks to for the UN.
Han is on the board of Standard Charter bank, awarded the UN's master banking services contract. This is Ban's UN.
On August 9 Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Farhan Haq directly about Han Seung-soo giving speeches at UN special adviser on water while Doosan, which he directs, makes sales including but not limited to water desalinization equipment in the same places. This is a blatant (mis) use of the UN, by Ban Ki-moon's mentor.
The UN left Ban Ki-moon's webpage down for August 9, and as of 9 am on August 10 has still not put the August 9 transcript online. Haq read out some generic advocacy points from Ban's Ethics Office, that restrictions are custom-designed for particular conflicts of interest, but would not disclose a single restriction on Han Seung-soo. Anyway, the public record speaks for itself. Watch this site.
After Inner City Press asked, on August 8 Ban Ki-moon's Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq said, "I was asked last week about Special Adviser Han Seung-soo and his dealings with a company named Doosan Infracore. Mr. Han disclosed this outside interest to the Organization, and the Ethics Office provided advice on the matter. Mr. Han was informed of the restrictions on his involvement with the company in the context of the nature of his contract with the Organization, under which he serves on a "when actually employed" basis. The measures put in place serve to ensure that the UN staff rules and regulations are adhered to, that there is no conflict of interest, and that the Organization's interests are fully protected."
From the August 8 transcript:
Inner City Press: I want to ask, given… you said that there's some… advice was given to him about how to operate to comply with the rules. I wanted sort of… sort of throw in a new fact, which is that Doosan also does business and has large contracts with, for example, Saudi Arabia. So I'm wondering, can you provide a little more detail on what the safeguards are for… for a UN Special Adviser to be on the board of a for-profit corporation that deals not… not only does business with the UN but which does business with… with countries with… the Secretary-General himself had said, like, Saudi financial threats caused him to change policy essentially. So I'm wondering…
Deputy Spokesman: That's… those are two very separate issues.
ICP Question: So you say. I'm simply asking you, can you describe what the safeguards are?
Deputy Spokesman: Like I said, there are safeguards put in place. He brought this to the attention of the UN organization in 2015, last year, at a time, by the way, when Doosan did not have business dealings with the United Nations. Over that period, since then, guidelines have been prepared to make sure that there is no conflict of interest and that the organization's interests are protected. But, like I said, this is part of the way the process works in terms of dealing with officials, including those, like Mr. Han Seung-soo, who are on a when-actually-employed basis and are not full-time employees.
ICP Question: Okay. Is it possible to know what these guidelines are?
Deputy Spokesman: These are the details I've gotten. I just got them over the past hour.
After publishing these links, Inner City Press on August 4 asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq about it, and about Jane Holl Lute for the second time -- this time, answered unlike the five days of questions about UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan being on an outside board of a corporation which has held events for, among other things, sneakers in the UN.
So does the UN only answer when it can say that Yes, Ban Ki-moon approved? On August 5, Inner City Press asked again, video here, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: Yesterday I'd asked about Han Seung-soo and whether he's the Special Adviser.
Deputy Spokesman: Yes, yes, he remains Special Adviser. I've put in a request to the Ethics Office to see whether he's made any notifications of different business dealings. I believe he may have done some, but I'm trying to get it from the Ethics Office. Alas, at this time of summer, there are some offices that are… will be harder to get replies back from so I'll let you know once I have it.
Question: Sure. I guess I want to understand. There's a rule that says a person needs approval from the Secretary-General for outside. Does that apply here, or is it just a matter of saying that you're doing it?
Deputy Spokesman: Well, first I need to check, again, whether the Ethics Office has had any notifications of any other activities.
Three days later, no answer from the UN - even as Doosan's Saudi business is exposed: Doosan, "a South Korea power equipment maker, said today that it signed a 1.1 trillion won ($1.2 billion) contract to build a power and desalination plant in Saudi Arabia." This is Ban Ki-moon's UN see new film here.
Video here. From the August 4 UN transcript:
Inner City Press: I thought you might have it. Yesterday, I'd asked Stéphane, and he'd said it was not an unfair question, whether the Secretary-General approved the service of Jane Holl Lute on the Union Pacific's Board.
Deputy Spokesman: Oh, yes. Yes, we checked, and the answer is yes, she did seek approval and did receive it.
ICP Question: And what I wanted to ask as a second question, which is that the special… is Mr. Han Seung-soo still the Special Adviser on Water and Risk Reduction?
Deputy Spokesman: I believe he was appointed that some time ago. Whether he still has that portfolio or not, I would need to check.
ICP Question: Because what I want to know is that he's also on the board of directors of a South Korean firm, Doosan Infracore, which is listed in the UN procurement database as doing business with the UN. So, I wanted to know if maybe you can get like… actually send me the answer, whether, in fact, if these two services are concurrent, whether it's been approved by the Secretary-General and whether… whether there's some special kind of safeguards that he recuse himself from business involving the UN or whether it's possible to be a UN Special Adviser on the board of a company that does business with the UN.
Deputy Spokesman: Well, first and foremost, I'll need to check what his status is, whether he's an adviser or not. Have a good afternoon, everyone.
The UN was set to play host on August 2 to a for-profit event led by agroup on which UN Security official Matthew Sullivan is on the board of directors, apparently with the approval of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who has yet to address his and his Under Secretaries General's role in the Ng Lap Seng / John Ashe bribery scandal which resulted on July 29 in a 20 month prison sentence for Sheri Yan's, whose father's one-man show Ban attended in the UN Secretariat lobby.
The event involves COPsync, Inc, a for-profit company which sells equipment to police departments and whose CEO has previously beensued for securities law violations.
Now Ban's lead spokesman Stephane Dujarric, having retured from two weeks away, has flat out refused to say whether, as UN rules require, Ban Ki-moon approved UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan's presence on an outside board of directors. Video here.
Because of the now five times refusal to answer this question, it must be noted that for example Ban Ki-moon's new (February 2016) coordinator against peacekeeper rapes, Jane Holl Lute, was later in April 2016 named to the board of directors of Union Pacific, a position thataccording to Internet research pays $250,000 a year.
On August 3, after publishing the above, Inner City Press asked Ban's spokesman Dujarric about it. Video here, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: I'm going to go at this a different way. On this… the issue that there is a rule saying that the UN… I mean, I can quote from it, but saying you should receive permission for outside engagements. Rather than ask about the one you've refused to answer on, I want to ask you this. Jane Holl Lute apparently was hired in February 2016 for this post or put into the post of sexual abuse, bring it under control. In April of 2016, she was named to the board of directors of Union Pacific, which seems to pay $250,000 a year. So, on this… in this case, can you say whether this outside engagement was approved by the Secretary-General?
Spokesman: I can check if that outside engagement exists and see what I can say.
Inner City Press: There was a press release by…
Spokesman: I understand. I have not seen the press release.
Inner City Press: Do you acknowledge it's a fair question to ask whether…?
Spokesman: I'm not saying it's not a fair question.
Inner City Press: When you answer that one, maybe you can answer the other one.
But Dujarric and his office did not answer the question(s) in the hours that followed. At 6:45 pm, under the eviction order of Ban and his head of Communications Cristina Gallach, Inner City Press was ordered to leave the Security Council stakeout (where it had just asked Ambassador Oh Joon and Samantha Power about the THAAD deployment in South Korea) - even as Gallach passed by, offering a tour of the Trusteeship Council Chamber where under Ban many dubious events have taken place.
Now this: Ban's “Special Envoy For Disaster Risk Reduction and Water” Han Seung-Soo is listed on the board of directors of South Korean firm Doosan Infracore - which does business with the UN. Was this approved by Ban Ki-moon? Could it be?
If Ban's Office answers, as it should, in this case, why has it refused in the case of UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan and the for profit event? Watch this site.
Here is another photo of Sullivan, speaking, with some the principals of the postponed event.
It's a simple yes or no question Inner City Press will continue to pursue.
Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's Office of the Spokesperson about the event three days in a row last week, including whether Ban had given his required approval for UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan to be on the board of a directors of an involved group (which was also involved with Francis Lorenzo, who founded UN-resident South South News and had pleaded guilty to UN bribery charges in the Ng Lap Seng case.)
On August 1, when Inner City Press asked about Jack Brewer listing himself as a "UN Ambassador for Peace and Sport," Ban's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said that the event is "canceled," there will be no answers on the three prior events or Sullivan being on the board or Jack Brewer listing himself as a UN Ambassador for Peace and Sport.
But as was published before Haq spoke, the event is NOT canceled - it is postponed, until later this month, and still lists UN Inspector Matthew Sullivan as a speaker:
"the decision has been made to POSTPONE this Tuesday’s (August 2) Peace Summit at the United Nations... Our team is scheduling a new date – tentatively during the week of August 15, 2016. The plan is to select and announce the new date within the next few days."
This is a cover-up. This is impunity. This is Ban's UN.
Last week Ban's deputy spokesman Haq, rather than answer this or which member state or UN Department is the sponsor of the August 2 event, accused Inner City Press of “unethical” Googling, implying that because Ban and his USG Cristina Gallach evicted Inner City Press as it investigated their links to the Ng Lap Seng scandal -- see, for example, this OIOS audit at Paragraphs 37-40 and 20(b) -- Inner City Press is now precluded from investigating that or other corruption in Ban's UN.
Haq said he is not aware of any problem with UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan being on the board of directors of the Jack Brewer Foundation (Brewer lists himself as a “UN Ambassador of Peace and Sports”), implying that Ban Ki-moon has approved all of this. Video here. Watch this site.
As the UN bribery scandal gathered force Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called for an audit by the UN Office of Internal Oversight Services of the Global Sustainability Foundation (GSF), David Ng Lap Seng's Sun Kian Ip Group and its affiliates including the "World Harmony Foundation" and pleaded-guilty Francis Lorenzo's South South News, among others.
While as of July 27 Ban and his Under Secretary General Cristina Gallach still have this last "bribery conduit" in a UN office after evicting Inner City Press for investigating it, and them, more dubious events are scheduled for Ban's UN. (Gallach, who appeared with Lorenzo, spoke in the GA Hall on July 29 - given her retaliatory evition of Inner City Press, it would only half cover the event with one of Ban's minders.)
On July 29 Inner City Press asked Ban's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, for the second day in a row, if UN Security Inspector Matthew Sullivan's position on the board of the directors of the sponsor of an August 2 event, which has links with pleaded-guilty Francis Lorenzo, was approved by Ban Ki-moon as required by UN rules. Haq refused to answer, video here.
Rather than answer this simple question, Haq said he is not aware of any problem with the individual. Does that mean that Ban Ki-moon has given up even pretending to enforce UN ethics rules? Or that Ban Ki-moon has approved this UN Inspector's moonlighting with entities linked with the UN's Lorenzo / John Ashe (RIP) / Ng Lap Seng bribery scandal?
One of the links is through an event held in the UN in January 2015 which Inner City Press has reported about and asked about, by “Reelcause” - the UN speakers included not only UN DSS Inspector Matthew Sullivan, a JBF board member, but also UN DSS Officer Anthony Barzelatto. We'll have more on this, as the UN is refusing to answer the most basic factual questions.
Even the simple question of who sponsored the use of the UN on August 2, a mission or a UN department, was stonewalled by Ban's Haq. He said, ask the group holding the event. Well, no. The UN premises are being used, and this requires a sponsor.
In fact, the head of the group now in a press release identifies himself as a UN Ambassador for Peace and Sport. Did Ban Ki-moon give him this title? Or does anything go, now that Ban's own Secretariat sold documents to Ng Lap Seng and Ban only wants to run for President of South Korea?
Now that Ban's UN goes so far as to evict the Press asking the question and "mis-speaks" to the UN Special Rapporteurs on Freedom of Expression and on Human Rights Defenders, and to either the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee or to Nobel Peace Prize laureate Jose Ramos-Horta?
Inner City Press and @InnerCityPress first reported on the dubious concussions event in the UN, involving Matthew Sullivan in 2014, before he and Ban and Gallach ousted and evicted Inner City Press from the UN.
Here is a notice of a for-profit event in the UN announced for August 2 by the Jack Brewer Foundation including JBF (UN) authorized board member UN Department of Safety and Security Inspector Mathew Sullivan, who on February 22 told Inner City Press Ban and Gallach had Banned it from all UN premises worldwide, audio here and petition here, and who further censored Inner City Press on July 26 from covering South Sudan and Haiti meeting.
Significantly, Sullivan was listed for a UN event by “Reelcause,” whose shareholders include not only Jack Brewer Foundation but also the“Montessori Model UN,” founded by Francis Lorenzo who had pleaded guilty to UN bribery charges (while Gallach leaves Lorenzo's South South News in an office after evicting Inner City Press as it investigated it, and her and Ban's links).
The JBF, on whose board of director UN Matthew Sullivan serves, hasappeared with South South News, here and Lorenzo, here (and photo).
So l'affaire Matthew Sullivan, which Ban's spokesman is trying to stop investigation of by calling even Googling unethical, is connected to the Francis Lorenzo UN bribery scandal. Perhaps this explains Ban's spokesmen stonewalling. Lead spokesman Stephane Dujarric stonewalled Inner City Press' previous questions about Montessori Model UN.
We also note that Jack Brewer Foundation is a shareholder of a company called "Immune Therapeutics," for which Brewer opened doors (including, literally, the UN's) to help the company sell pharmaceuticals. Immune Therapeutics' CEO is named Noreen Griffin, and she is linked to bribing imprisoned ex-Congressman William Jefferson. Why has Ban authorized one of his Security officials to be on this board of directors and to use the UN?
On July 28 when Inner City Press for the second time asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq about the specifics of for-profit events in the UN and Sullivan's presence on the board of directors of the events' sponsor, rather than answer Haq tried to call Inner City Press' research and reporting “unethical,” going so far as to ask if it had started research AFTER it was Banned from covering UN meeting on Haiti and South Sudan.
In fact, Inner City Press reported on the “concussions” event long before Ban and Cristina Gallach ousted it on February 19, and Sullivan on February 22 told Inner City Press it was Banned from UN premises worldwide. Haq's boss Stephane Dujarric claimed that day that Sullivan had gone beyond the ouster ordered by Gallach. If so, why did Sullivan do it?
Ban's UN has become a place where officials at all levels think they can sell access to the UN, since Ng Lap Seng so easily bought it. The scandal, as Inner City Press will shortly report, are connected. Ban's UN's response to reporting is to evict the Press, then to question whether Googling is somehow unethical. Vines here and here and here and here. Then video here. From the UN Transcript.
When after publishing a story exposing the notice and Sullivan's listed involvement Inner City Press asked Bna's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq about it, Haq said he had spoken with Sullvian who said he had not been aware he was listed, and is not involved. Haq refused ot answer more about the event, and cut off Inner City Press' questions. Video here.
This is not credible. In fact, Matthew Sullivan is on the board of directors of the group holding the event, which is either a violation of UN rules or was approved by Ban "Fast and Loose" Ki-moon. The applicable rule:
"ST/AI/2000/13 Outside activities
Section 2 Staff members engaging in outside activities authorized under the present instruction shall make clear to the organizers and participants in such activities, including any employers, that they act in their personal capacity and not as representatives of the United Nations.
Section 3 3.1 Under staff regulation 1.2 (o), a staff member shall not engage in any outside occupation or employment, whether remunerated or not, without the approval of the Secretary-General. For the purposes of the present instruction, the expression 'occupation' shall include the exercise of a profession, whether as an employee or an independent contractor."
Here is a photo of Sullivan with the people he says he doesn't know listed him for the August 2 event.
There are been other events with Sullivan, for example here: "MagneGas Announces Panelists for World Water Day Summit at the UN... The Summit will begin with a welcome from the CEO of MagneGas Corporation Ermanno Santilli and Inspector Matthew Sullivan of the United Nations Department of Safety and Security."
And another ("Reelcause," here in PDF) and yet another: "Discussing the GTX SmartSoles with various officials including Inspector Matthew Sullivan of the United Nations’ Department of Safety and Security."
In fact, the for profit company has had it stock touted citing UN Sullivan's involvement, here: DirectView Holdings, "facilitated a number of introductions and collaborative meetings for DirectView executives throughout the course of the week including with the United Nations' Inspector of Operations from the Department of Safety and Security."
While Ban Ki-moon cited immunity / impunity for 10,000 killed by cholera in Haiti, a meting on which Sullivan Banned Inner City Press from on July 26, doesn't this implicate at least US securities laws?
Since the above is easily available online, Ban Ki-moon's Office of the Spokesperson's denial and stonewalling is worse then negligent.
Under Ban Ki-moon, as shown in the Ng Lap Seng / John Ashe case investigation of which resulted in Ban evicting Inner City Press from the UN in retaliation, using Sullivan, everything has become for sale.
Detailed evidence presented, including about Under Secretary General Cristina Gallach who signed the ouster and eviction orders, has been sitting unacted on at Ban's Ethics office, and OIOS for months. Here was Gallach at Ng's South South Awards, and here was Inner City Press questioning her about it, and her passing the buck to Ban's lead spokesman Stephane Dujarric, before her ouster of Inner City Press from which she should have been recused.
How high does this particular scam go in the Department of Safety and Security, whose Captain McNulty and seven officer physically ousted Inner City Press on February 19? Audio here; McNulty initially refused to identify himself. DSS later cited a non-public Handbook to justify Inner City Press' ouster, here. Is USG Peter Drennan in on this? Michael "Mick" Brown, who oversees McNulty? There are some fine people in DSS, but it must be cleaned up, and all retaliation reversed and addressed.
How about the Department of Management which is titularly in charge of these events in the UN, including Andrew Nye, Craig Boyd and British Assistant SG Stephen Cutts? Ban Ki-moon's UN is corrupt throughout, and retaliates against the Press which pursues and reports on it. The UN's ouster and eviction of Inner City Press, and harassment and censorship since, has been pure retaliation. Now what?
Here's the notice for the August 2 event, followed by the UN's transcript of Ban's Haq's denials:
"COPsync Co-sponsors #Stand2Protect Peace Summit at the United Nations
DALLAS, July 26, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- COPsync, Inc. (NASDAQ: COYN), announced today that they are co-sponsoring the #Stand2Protect Peace Summit in conjunction with UN Ambassador Jack Brewer, the Blue Alert Foundation, the United Federation for Peacekeeping and Sustainable Development, and Trust 2 Protect. The Summit will be held at the United Nations Headquarters on August 2, 2016, from 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm EDT.
The goal of the United Nations #Stand2Protect Peace Summit is to bring together community and global leaders, law enforcement, politicians and influencers to discuss real solutions to end the growing distrust between communities and law enforcement. Prominent speakers at the Summit will include ... Inspector at the United Nations Headquarters Mathew Sullivan"
This is a for-profit company, selling services to Police Departments. Why is UN DSS Matty Sullivan involved?
Inner City Press after publishing the above asked Ban Ki-moon's deputy spokesman Farhan Haq, UN transcript here and below; video here
Ban's Haq said, ask them. But they have already, according to the UN, lied about Sullivan's involvement. The UN under Ban Ki-moon is a wild west of corruption that is not being cleaned up - instead, Ban throws about the Press that is asking about it.
On Ng Lap Seng, the UN Development Program began its own audit, which Inner City Press published here, and asked Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric for a press conference about. That has still not been held. And Dujarric, after misusing the UN briefing room and podiumand training and empowering his deputy to do so, has disappeared. We'll have more on this.
On July 1, Inner City Press asked this Ban Ki-moon spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, about the superseding indictment of Ng Lap Seng to include UNDP and all acts through September 2015. Paragraph 12 names the Secretary General. Video here;
UN Transcript here:
Dujarric said Inner City Press is free to say what it wants . Yes: from the street, to which Ban and his Head of Communications, with an assist from Dujarric, first threw Inner City Press on February 19 (audio here) then evicted its files (Video here.) On July 1, Dujarric at noon said he hadn't read the superseding indictment. Then he left the UN just after 3 pm, with no briefing for six days. This IS a cover up, on which we're have more.
The audit of Ban's Secretariat, completed early this year but first put online by Inner City Press, directly criticizes Cristina Gallach, the Under Secretary General for Communications and Public Information. On June 29, Inner City Press asked UN spokesman Farhan Haq, video here, UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: Monday down in… in Federal Court, there was a hearing for Mr. Ng Lap Seng in the ongoing case, and Assistant District Attorney [Daniel] Richenthal basically widened the case and said they're going to be… there's more things they're looking at as to Ng Lap Seng, and he also described in more detail a, quote, conduit of bribery taking place within the UN. And I wanted to know, since you've said you're monitoring it, what is the UN's response to the new information that was presented on Monday?
Deputy Spokesman: Yeah, we are aware of the latest information, and, as I've pointed out, the situation of South-South News is under review. It continues to be under review, but certainly, any new information is useful in light of that.
After the above, a corporate news wire which has a conflict of interest on this passed through South South News' claims that it has had "no connection with any government at any level" - this is false. But the conflicted corporate wire, with its own Permanent seat on the board of hte UN Correspondents Assocation which took money from Ng's South South News, merely passes through the denial. Call it journalism? We'll have more on this.
On June 27, former South South News reporter turned spokesperson for John Ashe and now his family wrote to the UN press corps, some of whom she saw over the weekend:
"Dear Friends and Dear UN and Media Representatives, I am kindly forwarding a Statement from the Family of the late John. W. Ashe, President of the UN General Assembly 68th Session, at the request of his widowed wife, Anilla Cherian.I have accepted to forward this Statement in my personal capacity and in honor of Ambassador Ashe’s legacy as a long-serving diplomat. I will not be addressing any questions and I do appreciate your understanding.
It was very nice seeing several of you over the weekend. I hope you are all doing well."
If the goal was to distinguish South South News from John Ashe and Ng Lap Seng, this doesn't do it.
The audit deals with South South News - which as of June 27 STILL has a UN office, photo here, UNlike Inner City Press. In Ban's UN one only gets due process if one has money, or pays money, as South South News did, including to the UN Correspondents Association which then gave Ng Lap Seng a photo-op with Ban. Or as the Saudis did to get Ban to remove them from the Yemen Children and Armed Conflict annex.
On June 27 in Federal Court, Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Richenthal said that South South News was a conduit for bribery involving the now conveniently (and mysteriously) deceased former PGA John Ashe. (Some with links to Ashe try to erase all trace, but here is one: UNCA with AAshe's spokesperson Konja, formerly of South South News), which one wire-with-a-conflict covering this story never mentions. Compare to this.)
Meanwhile while Inner City Press can only work with minders, its office given to Akhbar Elyom's correspondent, a former UNCA presdient, sits empty and Gallach gallavants in Paris. We'll have more on all this.
Ban's audit, notably, does not mention that Ban accepted Ng's South South Award and was in the program of Ng's August 2015 event in Macau.
Nor does Ban's audit mention that his Sri Lanka adviser Vijay Nambiar and his spouse, Ban Soon-taek, were both present at the founding of the Global Sustainability Foundation; the latter took photos with South South News' indicted Vivian Wang at the UN Correspondents Association ball where UNCA gave Ng, from whose South South News it took money, a photo op with Ban himself.
On April 16, at Ban's and his USG Cristina Gallach's direction, Inner City Press' long time UN office in S-303 was evicted and five boxes of files were dumped onto First Avenue. Video here and here.
On April 20, the Free UN Coalition for Access sign on S-303 was removed (photo here) without the consent of Inner City Press' office mate, also a FUNCA member, who was told that the lock was being changed, presumably to sell the office to someone else. Inner City Press immediately objected to MALU, the DSG, Chef de Cabinet and Spokesman, putting them on notice.
And lo and behold it was given to a former UNCA president who never comes to the UN, never asks questions: Saana Youssef of Egyptian state media Akhbar Elyom. This is Ban's UN.
UNCA, at least under Giampaolo Pioli, openly tells people to pay it money, it can get them UN official space. This is corruption.
Now since the eviction of Inner City Press, South South News has sent out a press release saying that despite the guilty plea by its President Francis Lorenzo and indictment of its Vice President Vivan Wang, it is clean - and blames its problems on a "few independent journalists." Wonder who's referred to - as the other one(s).
Not Reuters, which passes through without analysis South South News' press releases - and without disclosing that Reuters' Lou Charbonneau and now Michelle Nichols have occupied Reuters' permanent seat on the Executive Committee of the UN Correspondents Association, which took South South News' money then arranged a photo op for Ng Lap Seng with Ban Ki-moon.
South South News' founding is described in the John Ashe and Ng Lap Seng indictment; it is portrayed through gauze in the OIOS audit. The name South South News has appeared in the Panama Papers.
For now, another UN example. To deliver "personal" invitations to the South South Awards, which USG Gallach attended in September 2015, South South News needed access to the UN during the Septameber High Level week. So, Inner City Press is informed, South South News personnel got D or Diplomat passes through Lorenzo's Dominican Republic mission to the UN. Back, indeed.
Here are an initial two of many photographs of that event, these by Luiz Rampelotto of Europa Newswire via Facebook, including one of now indicted Vivian Wang of South South News with Mrs. Ban
The same indicted Vivian Wang of South South News with David Ng Lap Seng at the same UNCA event
On this, Inner City Press on January 29 sought to cover an UNCA event held in the UN Press Briefing Room, which was nowhere listed as closed. On February 19 Gallach, without recusing herself, unilaterally deactivated Inner City Press UN residential correspondents pass, and had Inner City Press' reporter physically thrown out on First Avenue without coat or passport. Audio here.
This is called retaliation. On the afternoon of April 12, Inner City Press while with another colleague asked Ban about Gallach's orders.
"That is not my decision," Ban said quickly. He is aware; the ouster and censorship serve him, but he says it is not his decision, just as for example Sri Lanka's Mahinda Rajapaksa or higher profile censors might.
On the evening of April 12 Gallach ordered the final eviction of all of Inner City Press' investigative files on Saturday, April 16 at 10 am. This is the face of today's UN corruption.
Here is some of what the OIOS audit says, about USG Gallach:
"37. On 30 June 2015, Global Sustainability Foundation sponsored an exhibition titled “The Transformative Power of Art” in the visitors’ lobby at United Nations Headquarters. This exhibition was curated by an Italian artist, whose works were displayed along with the works of other artists participating in one of his workshops.
38. Exhibitions in publicly accessible areas at Headquarters are governed by the Secretary General’s Bulletin ST/SGB/2008/6, which stipulates, inter alia, as follows:
(a) The United Nations Exhibits Committee, which is an interdepartmental body of the Secretariat chaired by the Under Secretary General for Communications and Public Information [Cristina Gallach] is the standing body that reviews and authorizes such exhibitions;
(b) Any proposal originating from an NGO or foundation must be accompanied by a written communication of support from a Secretariat department or office, a separately administered organ or programme of the United Nations, an organization of the United Nations system or a permanent or observer mission to the United Nations;
(c) Exhibit proposals focusing on a specific individual, or originating from a single artist, shall not be permitted;
(d) The Exhibits Committee may, at its discretion, reject a proposal for an exhibit in part or in its entirety, or require the elimination or alteration of any part thereof; and
(e) The secretariat of the Exhibits Committee shall inform the Assistant Secretary General, Office of Central Support Services, of the authorization granted for a proposed exhibit.39. OIOS noted that the exhibition held of 30 June 2015 was not in compliance with these provisions. The Exhibits Committee did not authorize the exhibition because it did not receive a proposal in accordance with (b) above. The Chef de Cabinet of the Office of the President of the sixty-ninth session of the General Assembly informed the Exhibits Committee of the President’s decision to host a series of major cultural events, which included an exhibition, reception, and concert. The Committee informed the Office of the President that the exhibition was not in accordance with the regulations for exhibits in publicly accessible areas at Headquarters, but the Office of the President decided to proceed with the exhibition anyway. Therefore, the Exhibits Committee did not accept, reject or alter the “proposal”.
40. OIOS notes that the Exhibits Committee only had an advisory role in the matter, and in the circumstances described, it could not have possibly prevented the staging of the event. However, considering that the exhibition was attended by the Secretary-General and other senior Secretariat staff despite its non-compliance with the Secretary-General’s bulletin on exhibits, the perception that the NGO was given preferential treatment or favour (that too without performing any due diligence checks) could have an adverse impact on the Organization’s reputation. This risk is aggravated by the allegations in the criminal complaint against Sun Kian Ip group, with whom this NGO is affiliated."
While Ban's spokesman Stephane Dujarric has said this audit will not be made public until April 22, on April 6 as a full text exclusive Inner City Press published the audit while noting affiliates the UN audit omitted, and portions of the audit that some involved seem to be trying to cover up, including not only as to the Department of Public Information, but also the Global Compact and other back-doors into the UN, including but not limited to "Friends of the UN."
Beyond the Under Secretary General of the Department of Public Information's responsibility for exhibits in the Visitor's Lobby such as the one indicted Sheri Yan's Global Sustainability Foundation held on June 30, 2015, she was also in charge when GSF was allowed, without any due diligence, to on March 25, 2015 sponsor an event entitled "Unveiling of the 'Ark of Return' Permanent Memorial." Audit at Paragraph 20 (b).
Inner City Press asked the UN about DPI's engagement with the Global Sustainability Foundation around the Ark of Return in October 2015. To be diplomatic, this should have led to / required a recusal.
DPI, the audit says, was "associated" with Ng Lap Seng's and Frank Liu's World Harmony Foundation through something called the "Friends of the UN" based in Los Angeles / Santa Monica. We'll have more on this.
As Inner City Press demonstrated even before publishing the audit, the Global Compact as of April 2016 lists Ng's World Harmony Foundation as a member, despite the October 2015 indictments.
Now we note that the Global Compact, represented at Ng's Macau event in August 2015, has a representative who because not a UN staff member kept the iPad Ng's Sun Kian Ip foundation gifted. What kind of "anti corruption" UN Global Compact is this?
On April 11, after publishing the above, Inner City Press asked Ban Ki-moon's spokesman Stephane Dujarric about it, and when Ban will answer questions. Video here, UN transcript here
On April 8 this is what Inner City Press asked Dujarric, video here, UN transcript here.
The audit cites Ng's Interntional Organization for South South Cooperation's engagements with, or capture of, the UN agency UNPAN, the UN Public Administration Network. A visit on April 8, 2016 toUNPAN's website finds them featuring articles they say were publishd in December 2016 - that is, in the future. Ironically, the article(s) address the topic of corruption. That is today's UN.
The audit for example does purport to cover South South News, but not the big money South South Awards held in September 2015 at the Waldorf Astoria including the Under Secretary General of the Department of Public Information (DPI) Cristina Gallach.
(Inner City Press in October 2015 questioned Ms. Gallach about her participation in the South South Awards, video here. On February 19, 2016 Gallach ordered Inner City Press to leave its long time office and stripped its Resident Correspondent accreditation, without once speaking to it. This is the subject of an April 5 letter to Ban Ki-moon from the Government Accountability Project, demanding that this “crude and heavy handed” retaliation be reversed, watch this site.)
On April 7, Inner City Press asked UN deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq a first round of questions about some of the limitations of the audio,video here,
UN transcript here:
Inner City Press: I've now obtained and published this OIOS audit of selected NGOs and related entity that you said will come out on 22 April. And there's different things I want to ask you about it, but main thing I want to ask about is, there's an entire section that runs from paragraph 37 through paragraph 40 that it's about an exhibit they say was improperly held in the Visitor's Lobby on 30 June 2015. And it goes through a lot of detail, and it says that the Under-Secretary-General of the Department of Public Information is in charge of the exhibits committee and, I guess, in charge of the space. And somehow, this exhibit was held in violation of a number of the rules that apply to it. What I'm wondering is, what is the response? Obviously, it seems like you guys have had access to this audit even before it was sent to Member States. What is the thinking… the way they walk through it is they say… it seems strange. If she's in charge of the space and the exhibit took place without complying with the rules, what is the response to her responsibility for that? And what steps have been taken? The audit doesn't say that any steps have yet been taken to address that.
Deputy Spokesman Haq: Well, with regard to the specific cases referred to in the audit, actions being taken to determine responsibility and any follow-up and any measures that may be deemed appropriate. And so, we'll continue to study that.
Inner City Press: And who decides? In getting the audit, there obviously is a long section about South-South News, but I noticed that a related entity of which there's been a lot of coverage is South-South Awards. And it's unclear, it's not mentioned once in here. And this is something that… I mean, the Secretary-General received the South-South Award. This is an entity that's absolutely connected to Ng Lap Seng and Frank Lorenzo et al. So, the question is, who… maybe that's OIOS, but who decided on the scope of this audit, the date that it would start, 1 January 2012, and the exclusion of… of… one of the things that people covering this scandal have focused on are these glitzy events in the Waldorf. The Under-Secretary-General of DPI did attend in September, but prior to that, Ms. [Susana] Malcorra took an award for Ban [Ki-moon]. Why is this not in the audit? And will there be an audit of South-South Awards going forward?
Deputy Spokesman Haq: I think the audit is what it is. It's prepared by the professional people in the Office of Internal Oversight who deal with audits. And you can evaluate the results for yourself.
Inner City Press: And just one other thing I wanted to ask about, because I know I'd asked Stéphane [Dujarric] and you, going back to October, about the inclusion of South-South News content in UN Television archives. And, eventually, you came back with this answer that it was due to Habitat. And I just… I've pointed out to you that there's a number of things that have nothing to do with Habitat, a number of inclusions that you just search UNTV for "South-South News". But, I do notice in this audit that there is a reference to South-South News and Habitat. So, I wanted to know, was this finding that you said of people looking into how it got in there, was it basically just taken from reading the audit, or was there a… a… a… an analysis, either by your office or DPI, of how the many other inclusions of South-South News and UNTV archives took place?
Deputy Spokesman: No, our office had checked with DPI. That was prior to us knowing about the results of the audit.
Similarly, using timing as a basis of omission, by stopping the audit at January 1, 2012, OIOS did not address the issue of Ng's South South News getting a photo op directly with Ban Ki-moon in December 2011 at the UN Correspondents Association ball at Cipriani's 42nd Street after giving money to UNCA including for a two page ad spread in UNCA's “ball book.”
While Dujarric's deputy Farhan Haq allowed four UNCA board members from Reuters, France 24 and Agence France Presse to seek to rebut this including by directly addressing Inner City Press in the noon briefing on April 6, the cut-off at January 1, 2012 is problematic, especially as related to Ban Ki-moon himself.
The audit goes out of its way to say that Ban's Executive Office of the Secretary General did not know when a letter to it was modified to add the name of Ng's firm and of South South News. How is that possible? And again, why was Ban's direct dealing with Ng cut out from the audit by a matter of days?
Many of the irregularities in the audit are things first reported by Inner City Press, such as Yan's Global Sustainability Foundation funding the UN's slavery memorial, including an engagement with Gallach's DPI which even the audit criticizes while DPI tries to deny.
Undeniable is that Gallach chaired the UN Exhibits Committee which allowed the bogus “Transformative Power of Art” exhibit on June 30, 2015.
How does Gallach's no due process ouster of Inner City Press on February 19, 2016, when Inner City Press was thrown into the street and its laptop on the sidewalk by eight UN guards, look now that the audit is out? Even with the audit inexplicably omitting the South South Awards -- Ban Ki-moon got one of the awards -- the audit chides DPI for lack of due diligence for its slavery event, and Gallach as chair of the Exhibit Committee which allowed the Jun 30, 2015 “Transformative Power of Art” exhibit.
Gallach, who was questioned by Inner City Press about her role at the South South Awards with Frank Lorenzo, had a conflict of interest and should never have been near the decision to thrown Inner City Press out of the UN.
That decision must be reversed, as the Government Accountability Project has asked Ban, even before Inner City Press published the specifics of the audit.
Courthouse News Service of April 6 reports on GAP's first letter:
"The Government Accountability Project complained about Lee's fallout in a Feb. 26 letter to the U.S. Permanent Mission of the United Nations.
'The action targeted Matthew Lee alone, and appears to be retaliatory in response to independent, critical journalism,' wrote Beatrice Edwards, the project's international program director.
UNCA, the group whose meeting Lee got in trouble for recording, has denied the appearance of unfairness. 'UNCA stands for press freedom and vehemently defends rights of journalists at the UN and around the world,' the statement says."
Really? Where? It was the Free UN Coalition for Access asking this month about the UN requiring minders, not only in UN Headquarters but also in South Sudan. The Courthouse News continues:
"Lee blasted what he described as 'post-hoc' justifications for his ouster, which he compared to a Franz Kafka novel. 'Initially, they tried to say that I secretly filmed a closed meeting,' he said.
'That's fallen apart because the meeting wasn't recorded as closed.' Lee laughed off allegations that he entered a restricted area to secretly film the meeting, which he broadcast via a popular web-casting platform. 'It's hard to say that a Periscope live-streaming with my arms up is secret,' he said.
By downgrading his residential correspondent credentials to a second-tier status, the U.N. has restricted Lee's freedom of movement, forced him to be chaperoned by a minder."
That's right, a UN minder courtesy of UN Communications chief Cristina Gallach and ultimately, Ban Ki-moon. In terms of violations, and cover up, see Paragraphs 37 through 40 of the OIOS audit.
OIOS Audit of Ng & South South News, OIOS Cut Out Ban Photo Op with Ng at UNCA Ball by Matthew Russell Lee
Inner City Press on April 5 asked if Ng's World Harmony Foundation is still part of the UN Global Compact; deputy spokesperson Haq said he would check but never came back with an answer. On April 6 Inner City Press asked again and Haq said yes - now we see it is confirmed and criticized in the audit.
Worse while Inner City Press from October 2015 on asked Dujarric and Haq how South South News got its content in the UNTV archives run by Gallach's DPI, Haq belatedly mentioned only one use, connected to HABITAT. Now we see the HABITAT - South South News interaction is listed in the audit, which it seems Haq consulted before answering (and whatever else he did with the audit).
But why didn't OIOS look into South South News' OTHER inclusions in DPI's archives of UNTV? Watch this site.
Another question, now more poignant with the full audit online, is why the wire services reporters from Reuters and Agence France Presse, on the Executive Committee of the UN Correspondents Association which took Ng's South South News' money and then gave Ng a photo op with Ban Ki-moon, didn't even MENTION that DPI, their partner in censorship, was listed and criticized in the audit.
Not only the South South Awards, but the the Gallach-approved bogus exhibition criticized in detail in the audit is nowhere in their reports. Hence the April 6 threat and April 6 noon briefing, video here. We'll have more on this