Thursday, July 22, 2010

Outgoing official slams United Nations 'decay'

A departing offical lets loose on the U.N.:

Aides to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon were in damage control mode on Wednesday after a blistering attack on his leadership by the outgoing Swedish head of a UN unit battling internal fraud.

As Ban returned from a Kabul conference on Afghanistan, his spokesman faced questions about charges made by Swede Inga-Britt Ahlenius, the former head of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS), that the UN boss sought to thwart her efforts and led the the world body into "decay."

In a 50-page memo to Ban leaked to the Washington Post, Ahlenius accused the secretary general of systematically undercutting her authority, notably by thwarting her efforts to hire her own staff.

Ahlenius, who stepped down last Friday at the end of a five-year term, also launched a rare, personal attack, saying there was no accountability at the United Nations and more broadly questioning Ban's stewardship.

"Your actions are not only deplorable, but seriously reprehensible...Your action is without precedent and in my opinion seriously embarrassing for yourself," she said in the memo quoted by The Washington Post on Tuesday.

"I regret to say that the secretariat is in a process of decay," the 71-year-old Swede added.

Power corrupts, etc...


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