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At UN, "Scam" of Promotions & Exam in Security Department Hit by Judge, Oh Censorship

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 2 -- At the end of May the UN Dispute Tribunal put on its web site a decision which confirms criticisms long made of fairness in the UN Department of Safety and Security by whistleblowing Security officers and Inner City Press.

  It all began, in a sense, with a leaked master plan of promotion which Inner City Press obtained and published in 2009 entititled Possible Transfers and Assignments / Reassignments." The list undermined the credibility of interviews that were being conducted, implying that some decisions have already been made.

  And so a Panel was set up, in UN style, to investigate. But chief Bruno Henn refused to be interviewed by the Panel, Inner City Press learned and published.

  Now, sources say, it is David Bongi taking the role. Inner City Press covered him along with Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Under Secretary General Greg Starr, failing to back up UN Security after they were beaten by guards for Turkey's Erdogan.

  Inner City Press covered Bongi most recently after exposing the cover-up of 14 kilograms of cocaine in the UN mail room.

  This exclusive was stolen without credit by Reuters, Bloomberg, and AFPthe Turkish security abuse story was stolen without credit by big media at the UN, who now after Inner City Press complained have set up their own Panel to seek to expel Inner City Press, after trying to censor the Press. (That fight delayed this publication by two days). The UN Dispute Tribunal probably can't take that case: but a real court could.

Here is from the UNDT decision put on the Internet in late May:

45. Thus, there are significant doubts whether the reason for the proposed exercise is bona fide as it appears unsupported by the facts. If this exercise were due to the CMP budget limitations, then the 24 regular budget posts would not be included in the list of posts open for vacancies. Furthermore, the existence of an actual restructuring plan, as submitted by the Respondent, is doubtful. No evidence of the existence of an actual restructuring plan has been provided. The only remotely relevant record provided to the Tribunal is an undated document “Basic information on evaluation criteria for the Security Officer selection process”, which generally explains the proposed assessment process. However, the status and the authorship of this document have not been explained to the Tribunal. Further, the internal vacancy announcement issued in April 2012 does not indicate how many posts are being advertised. In addition, although the Respondent submits that the funding for the Applicants’ posts will no longer be available, he does not state when exactly such funding will cease—in fact, it appears that CMP-related funding may be available at least until 2013 (see Report of the Secretary-General, “Associated costs related to the capital master plan”, A/63/582 (3 December 2008), providing estimated costs for 2008–2013). It is unclear on what basis the Respondent submits that “cutbacks demand a reduction from 85 Security Officer positions to 49 Security Officer positions”. The sole document proffered in support of this proposition—A/63/582— does not appear to contain this information. Thus, in view of the factors above, substantial doubts exist with the lawfulness of the proposed exercise.

56. The Tribunal gave serious consideration to the issue of the duration of the suspension and finds that, on the information before it, the exercise in its present form cannot continue and the suspension on the exercise in its current parameters will remain in place until this case is disposed of on the merits. There is obviously a need to have some form of resolution of the situation in SSS, and the present judgment should not be interpreted otherwise. Whatever process is going to be eventually applied, even in the absence of a properly promulgated administrative issuance, such process must be conducted in compliance with the basic standards of fairness and reasonableness and it must be properly documented.


57. The decision requiring the Applicants to undergo a competitive process announced in the SSS bulletin for 6–9 April 2012 being found prima facie unlawful, the Tribunal orders suspension of the implementation of the decision to carry out the said competitive process until the present case is disposed of on the merits.

  We'll have more on all this - watch this site.

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Click here for Sept 23, '11 about UN General Assembly

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These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

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