By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive, CJRLetter PFT
UNITED NATIONS GATE, July 21 – The corruption of the UN system under Antonio Guterres has extended to the UN Capital Development Fund, UNCDF. Today Inner City Press publishes this exclusive regarding Somalia and Somaliland, and inaction by UN headquarters: “Dear Matthew, I have gathered documents detailing corruption, theft, abuse of power and abuse of office by UN officers Anka Kitunzi (P5), Dmitry Pozihdaev (P5) and Paul Simkin (P5). I have written to the UNCDF officers in New York, who then said they had triggered an investigation by the UN OAI. Due to the lethargic approach by the UN, I wrote to the Donors of the programme, the Swedish SIDA and especially UK DfiD. Unfortunately, the donors claim they are awaiting the investigations by the UN. This investigation is nothing but a cover up. The gross abuse by UNCDF officers based in Somaliland, where an individual withdrew funds from UN sponsored accounts for personal use, has led the Somaliland Government to remove from office the Mayor of Borama town, who participated in the fraud. Copies of the bank statements and letters from UN were shared with the donor, DFiD, but the donor does not care what happens to funds sent to Somalia. The funds are treated as a free-for-all. The said UNCDF officer who actually withdrew some US$38,000, which were likely distributed as kickbacks to the UN officers based in Nairobi in office.
The response of the UNCDF has been to demand that the District refunds the funds which have been misused, thus driving Somaliland into greater poverty. Mr. Anka Kitunzi, the Head of Office for UNCDF Somalia, has spent most of 2016 in New York while earning an annual salary of US$ 300,000+ and additional allowances of US$ 30,000 as DSA in New York, pretending to work on Somalia issues while undergoing medical care at UN expense. Anka flies First Class on holidays to Uganda, his home, yet claims substantial allowances while pretending to work from Kampala. The UNDP Somalia has written e-mails protesting this behaviour, but Judy Karl, the Executive Secretary in charge of UNCDF in New York, goes out of the way to protect Mr. Anka.
Instead of investigating the flights and Daily Subsistence Allowances filched brazenly by Mr. Anka, Ms Judith Karl has sent in a UN accountant Mr. Birre Abebe from Ethiopia to come and cook up books to clean Mr. Anka’s terrible records. The man from Ethiopia is being paid US $12,000 a month to do the cover up. This cooking of books shall continue until end of August, then the OAI inspectors are expected to arrive in Nairobi in September 2019 to declare that there is no problem, and thus the UN white washing will have been accomplished. Even as all this takes place, the Somalia donors representatives living in the cool leafy suburbs of Nairobi while pretending to oversee Somalia, are not concerned about the abuse of funds by UN staff based in Nairobi at great costs to the UN, and pretending to work in Mogadishu. Mr. Anka for example, has managed to be a Head of Office for Somalia while spending annually about two weeks only in Somalia, flying into the capitals and NEVER visiting any project. Mr. Anka has spent over nine years in the Nairobi office, while international staff have to be redeployed every four years. This abuse has been sanctioned by Exec. Sec. Judith Karl, based in New York, who is happy to receive officially over US$ 420,000 annually from UNCDF Somalia (7% of all funds raised by UNJPLG from donors for Somalia (about US 6 million given annually to UNCDF), are remited to New York). The familiarity of Mr. Anka and Dr Dmitry with the actors in Somalia and Puntland over the decade has led to strange relationships open to abuse. In 2019, contractors based in Puntand wrote to the UN complaining that the Official who was working directly with the UN JPLG had created a number of companies that he owned through proxies, and others he controlled, and that all tenders were funneled to these companies. As usual, UNCDF continues to work with the same companies which the ILO pretends to oversee bidding and BQs. The quarrels over the US$ 4 million funds is at the heart of the expulsion of ILO from Somaliland, but the paymaster is Mr. Anka Kitunzi, going strong for a decade now reigning over Somalia..
Then, after some back and forth by Inner City Press, banned by corrupt Guterres from entering the UN for 383 days and with his spokespeople refusing all written questions about corruption, this:
Dear Matthew, Thank you for your response. I thought about this and have decided to forward the e-mails to you. It is sad that the UN basically acts as the Government in Somalia, taking control of ‘elections’ where carefully chosen elders select candidates who then select the ‘President’. The President is then guarded against his people by African Union forces, which number of thirty thousand, and are FULLY paid for by EU/UK/USA… The sadness is that the UN in Somalia, which provides the rationale and justification for donors, is unaccountable. Very little funding finds its way to the villages of Somalia, except for famine relief and food aid. Poverty begets desperation. The terrorist organizations of Al Shabaab an affiliate of Al Qaeda, actually does more for villagers than the corrupt UN machinery, an issue that UN acknowledges. How will the terror threat be contained, when UN and its agencies are looting the little donor funding for poor Somalia? Paying huge salaries ad allowances, first class flights, holidays in NY etc, to people who never leave the comfort of Nairobi is actually obscene! UN meanwhile continues to be accused of racialism, elitism, and a refusal to employ ethnic Somalis. All top positions are by Europeans who like to sit in Nairobi. UNCDF is managed by an African from Uganda, which supplies the bulk of AU forces, so is beyond reproach. He is managed by a Russian/Serbian person based in Uganda. UNCDF and JPLG (Joint Programme of Local Government) are important because they are supposed to pump millions of dollars to local projects. Most of the UN and UNDP programmes are hollow ‘capacity building’ programmes which are basically repeats of same workshops and seminars, or channeling salaries to politicians, police etc. UNCDF annually sends US$ 6 million to local projects in Somalia. This is a small figure internationally, but it is a huge % of all funding to projects in poor Somalia. It is sad when these funds are stolen.
The response from Guterres’ UN? A UN official replied, “Please give this some room prior to notifying DFID as a cancellation of DFID funds will close the whole of JPLG.”
That is, cover up corruption so Big Tony and his crew can keep getting paid public money. We’ll have more on this.
Guterres’ corrupt has also extended to what some had called the UN’s crown jewel, UNICEF. This week after banned Inner City Press reported first hand on the UNICEF Kid Power Goodwill Ambassador family using for physical injury from a fender bender while kickboxing on oxy, here, now this:
In UNDT/2019/033 we learn of a UNICEF professional ”investigation” so wanting that the Judge hearing the case referred the INVESTIGATOR to the Exec Head of UNICEF for consideration of disciplinary action. The case relates to alleged ”program funds” fraud in Pakistan that initially led to an innocent staff member being dismissed only to be reinstated and awarded damages by the UNDT. We learn of gross incompetence, loss of evidence, disingenuous concealment and a failure to pursue exculpatory evidence – not by the case subject but by the investigator! Noting that the Judge had no special information or insight, all of the failings outlined in the case should have been identified by UNICEF legal, HR and Investigations management before any form of disciplinary action was undertaken against the staff member but the in-your-face failings seem to have entirely escaped any kind of rational or objective review by management thereby compounding the seriousness of case issues identified by the UNDT.
Now, add into the mix the case of UNDT/2019/045 where we learn that UNICEF recruited into, yes, its Security Section in war ravaged Somalia a man who had served 15 years in prison in New York for RAPE, assault, false imprisonment and burglary. A situation made worse by the fact that this information was in the public domain, had HR bothered to check.
Because even banned, Inner City Press is fair, it was UNDT itself which said it has confirmed that the person UNICEF sent to Somalia was “was imprisoned at Woodbourne Correctional Facility in New York State, United States of America, following a conviction on charges of rape in the first degree; unlawful imprisonment in the first degree; burglary in the second degree and assault in the second degree.” This is an outrage – and typically under Guterres, the Emperor of Impunity himself, no one has been held accountable. The faux feminists who send rapists to war zones then covers it up through censorship.
Oh, and let’s not forget that the UNICEF ”staff member’s” educational credentials were fraudulent. The bizarre approach taken to investigating the matter when it did come to light also raises questions about management competency. All this from the UN Agency mandated to protect vulnerable children when it appears they cannot even identify convicted criminals in their own ranks.
What we see here is systemic ”duty of care” failings. An organization where its internal investigators are found to be incompetent and disingenuous, if not actually dishonest. Recruiting a convicted rapist into the ranks of the security department is simply incredulous and exposes the lie that are so-called UN personnel clearances. (An issue that has arisen repeatedly in Peacekeeping in terms of screening police and military personnel). I know for a fact that there is no such thing, for example, as an official UN check of criminal records before the UN recruits civilian staff — we’ll have more on this, with regard even to UN Security which Guterres used to rough up and lawlessly ban and target the Press.
Even still banned after 280 days we’ll have more on all of this: this is Guterres’ UN. The UN has banned Inner City Press from entering its campus since July 5, claiming that its Lieutenant Ronald Dobbins targeted ouster of Inner City Press from a speech by Secretary General Antonio Guterres on June 22 then from a meeting about his budget on July 3 were “altercations.” On August 17, with no due process and no accountability, Guterres’ Global Censor Alison Smale issued a rulingwithout once hearing from Inner City Press, making the ban permanent. Now this ban has been extended beyond the UN Secretariat to the other side of First Avenue, the once crown jewel of the UN system now corrupted to (as in CARand Myanmar), UNICEF, the “children’s agency.” Inner City Press has responded to an UNICEF invitation to an event for a book by Kul Gautam on September 5. On Friday August 31 past 6 pm UNICEF’s Michelle Siegel wrote, “bring your UN media accreditation for security clearance. If you are not a currently accredited UN journalist you will not be admitted to the event.” Wonder(ed) why. Now it emerges that Kul Gautam earlier on August 31 met with Guterres (who dominated the photo promoting the book) – and then Inner City Press was disinvited. On September 5 Inner City Press went to check out, then stake out, the event, which is its right. A slew of people with no UN ID at all went in. After a time, not Guterres but his chief of staff MariaLuiza Viotti and her chief of staff Mr. Eihab Omaish, previously Jordan’s Deputy PR, arrived. Inner City Press informed them, politely, that it had been banned from this UN book event. They did not react at all. This is what Guterres is doing to the UN, including its badges that Guterres through Smale can revoke the moment you ask him about cash, Cameroon or corruption. Now UNICEF of Henriette Fore and Queen Rania and David Beckham have joined Guterres’ censorship, hamhandedly. (We’ll assume Fore checked this with the Queen, and Bend it Like Beckham, and the one and only Kul Chandra Gautam, author of “Global Citizen from Gulmi”). Guterres is killing the UN. We’ll have more on this. Earlier Guterres’ retaliatory ban was extended to the Pierre Hotel on Fifth Avenue, for a July 10 press conference by the UN affiliated but ostensibly independent World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) which as Inner City Press has previously reported helped North Korea with its cyanide patents and retaliated against it staff and media. Inner City Press was e-mailed an invitation on July 2 and replied with an RSVP to cover it. Marshall Hoffman of WIPO’s public relations firm Hoffman PR wrote back, “Thanks. We will see at the press conference.” After that, Guterres spokesman Farhan Haq was asked why Inner City Press is banned and said it is pending a review of two “altercations” – both of which were improper and unilateral ousters of Inner City Press by UN Security’s Dobbins and officers, four of whom refused to give their names. Soon, there was this follow up e-mail from WIPO’s flak Marshall Hoffman: “Dear Matthew, It has come to my attention that your accreditation to the UN has been suspended pending an investigation into an incident. Given the suspension, I regret you will not be able to attend the WIPO press conference.” This is more than a little strange – the press conference is not explicitly limited to UN accredited journalists, and Inner City Press has not been contacted once by the UN about the review or any suspension, it was only told at the 46th Street gate that its banned for some undefined time. But now also banned from a press conference at a hotel in Manhattan by an agency for which Guterres spokespeople have refused to answer, saying Francis Gurry (who will speak at the Pierre Hotel press conference along with Soumitra Dutta from Cornell University and Bruno Lanvin from INSEAD) has his own governing board? Something stinks here. We’ll have more on this.