Sunday, January 22, 2017

UN Orders Staff Away From Women's March, While UN Gallach at Sam Power's Election Party

By Matthew Russell Lee
UNITED NATIONS, January 20 – UN system officials have told their staff not to attend the "Global Women's March" on Saturday, January 21. Here is an email from the UN World Food Program:
From: Catherine COLMAY [at] on behalf of Bonnie GREEN
Date: Thursday 19 January 2017 at 16:36
Subject: Guidance on Public Political Activities

Message addressed in bcc to All HQ Staff
On behalf of Bonnie Green, Director, Ethics Office
Dear HQ Colleagues,
I am writing about the Women’s March in Rome, scheduled for this Saturday, the 21st January 2017, and our obligations as employees of an international civil organization.
Although the Women’s March in Rome has many goals including respect for civil rights, the March in Rome is part of the “Global Women’s March” conceived as a reaction to the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States and is intended “…to send a bold message to the new US administration on their first day in office.” [As per Women’s March in Rome Facebook page and other collateral.] 
Whereas our personal political convictions remain inviolate, while we work for WFP, we do not have the freedom of private persons to take sides or express personal political views publicly, either individually or as members of a group. As such, it is not appropriate for us to participate in the Women’s March in Rome or any of the marches as part of the “Global Women’s March”.
The Standards of Conduct for the international Civil Service may be accessed in English,French, Spanish and Arabic, and feel free to pass by the Ethics Office (1Y08) for hard copies in any of the languages.  
As always, the Ethics Office is available to you for additional guidance in person or at WFP.ETHICS [at]
Bonnie E. Green
Director and Chief Ethics Officer
Ethics Office
World Food Programme
   While there is much to be said about this, what is clear to Inner City Press is that this eleventh hour face- (or funding-) saving attempt exposes again the double standards at work in the UN.
  While UN system line staff are told not to participate in this Women's March on a Saturday, UN Under Secretary General for Public Information Cristina Gallach proudly retweeted of outgoing US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power's UN-heavy "election night party."
  Gallach also, among other things, highlighted the critique of Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson reportedly considering not having a traveling press corps. But Ban Ki-moon, who as UN Secretary General, hired Gallach to communicate for him, did not have a traveling press corp, and rarely held press conferences.
  This same Cristina Gallach had her Department of Public Information use public funds to pay a trainer to tell non-governmental groups accredited to the UN that Detroit, Michigan is a third rate city" in "flyover country," here.
  This while Gallach used public money to travel to her native Barcelona to receive a personal award, and refused to answer or explain about it.
  As to the UN's comment on any of this, now Ban's holdover spokesman at the UN, Stephane Dujarric, has answered only two and a half of 22 questions Inner City Press submitted, and that on a delay. Whatever is provided now will be published.
 In full disclosure Cristina Gallach is also the UN official who, as Inner City Press inquiredinto her and now-gone UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's connections to the corruption scandals surrounding the UN - the John Ashe / Ng Lap Seng bribery case (Gallach did no due diligence, UN audit at Para 37-40 and 20b), and now the indictments against Ban Ki-moon's brother and nephew, who worked for the UN's landlord Colliers International - evicted Inner City Press without any due process, and restricts it still, with no right to appeal. 
We'll have more on this.