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On Nepal, Allegations onUNDP Called Old, Qatar's Abuse Not Covered

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, May 26 -- Nepal post-earthquake reconstruction was the topic when Magdy Martínez-Solimán of UNDP held a press conference at the UN on May 26. Inner City Press asked him about a critique of UNDP's use of funds, including that UNDP had "poor financial controls, weaknesses in payment processes and misreporting and recording of payments.” Video here.

   Martínez-Solimán said these were old problems -- 2013 -- and that things are better now. We've heard that from UNDP on its Law and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan, and will take a closer look here.

  Inner City Press also asked Martínez-Solimán to comment on Qatar not allowing Nepali workers to go home for funeral. Martínez-Solimán said he was unaware of that, adding that he'd been on full plane on a route that Nepalis would have been taking.

   Martínez-Solimán added that the UN has asked Qatar to train Nepalis in engineering, to be able to certify which homes still standing are safe to return to. He said there has been no response. But a wire service present which had not asked the Qatar mistreatment of workers question but followed up looking for good news about Qatar giving train, apparently didn't report the answer when it was that Qatar had, in fact, not helped Nepal at all.

And when the UN News Center did its version, linked to by the Spokesperson, it did not include either question and answer, on spending flaws or UN-favored Qatar. And so it goes.


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