on UN Council, Nigeria and Brazil Not Keen to Use It, Lebanon Won't
Matthew Russell Lee
NATIONS, October 15 -- In five uncontested elections, the UN General
Assembly put five countries on the Security Council for the next two
years: Nigeria, Lebanon, Brazil, Bosnia and Gabon. Inner City Press
asked the Foreign Minister of Nigeria Chief Ojo Maduekwe if his
country would use the seat to address problems like the killing and
raping of protesters of the coup leader in Guinea Conakry.
responded indirectly, speaking of an ECOWAS meeting being convened in
Nigeria. Video here.
So, Nigeria would not use the Security Council.
asked the Ambassador of Brazil Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti if she
would like to use the Council on the problems on Honduras, if they
remain in January. She referred to regional solutions. Video here.
Nigeria, would not use the Council. Gabon did not even come to the
country that is on the agenda of the Council. But its Ambassador
Nawaf Salam refuse to answer any questions on Thursday, saying there
would be two years to do so.
Nigeria's foreign minister, use of Council about Guinea not shown
Inner City Press asked Sudan's
Ambassador, representing the Arab Group, if Lebanon would recuse
itself from votes and consultations on UNIFIL and Resolution 1701.
No, he responded, adding that the Permanent Five are involved in
nearly every agenda item, and yet they still vote.
was taken down, Inner City Press ran to the noon briefing and asked
the General Assembly spokesman what rules or precedents apply to
member states on the Council being on the agenda, and voting on their
items. The election is over, he replied, your question may be moot.
Watch this site.
* * *
Assembly President Treki Hires Daughter and Cousin, For Family Values
Matthew Russell Lee
NATIONS, October 14 -- While the occupant of the Office of the
President of the UN General Assembly changes each year, the same
cannot be said for practices like nepotism and lack of transparency.
Under the previous President, Nicaragua's Miguel d'Escoto Brockmann,
Inner City Press found and
reported the hiring of two of his
relatives, nephew Michael Clark and niece Sofia Clark, in the Office.
Ali Treki of Libya lists on the web
site of his Cabinet a relative
named Ali Mohamed Treki. When Inner City Press asked the Office's
spokesman and chief of staff for the precise familial relation, the
talk got vague and went off the record.
Press discovered that Ali Treki's daughter Amal Ali Treki is working
in the Office, and got this confirmed by Treki's thus far fair
spokesman Jean-Victor Nkolo. Several other questions remain
outstanding; the responses will be reported upon receipt.
President of the General Assembly is the highest, at least
technically, in the UN system. But it is run like a family business.
has also asked by whom and how much President Treki gets paid. This
seems like a basic and fair question, but it has yet to be answered.
It has been implied that Inner City Press should assume that Treki is
paid by his government, Libya, but it has also been argued that he is
and will be independent from Libya and its leader, Colonel Gaddafi.
Which is it?
Kerim left unanswered who paid him -- a private company
called WAZ Media -- and how much (reputed at $400,000). Inner City
Press was asked, how many should Treki be paid, without being told by
embroiled in controversies, some by choice and some by happenstance.
He did not write Gaddafi's
disjointed General Debate speech: perhaps
no one did. And continued reporting by Inner City Press about the
Assembly's overruling of Treki's
decision to give the floor to
Madagascar's coup leader find that Treki was misled, to some degree,
by those who called the question and the vote.
decision on September 18 to answer a stray question about gay rights
by calling homosexuality "not acceptable," not only by him
but by "two billion Muslims and... Buddists and Jews," was
his own choice. Inner City Press reported
the comments, then asked
Treki about the resulting condemnation by Congressman Barney Frank
and counterparts of his in the UK and Australia. Treki stood by his
comments, which Inner City Press understand that many of his own
staff counseled him against.
UN PGA Ali Treki, a man of family values,
other answers not yet shown
Treki has attracted some savvy UN staffers, using the professional
level UN-paid posts available to him. His chief of staff Jamal
Benomar, an expert on the rule of law, has his work cut out for him.
His economic adviser Yasser Elnaggar has been around the UN block.
Some say that Treki's daughter is among his best staff members.
That's what every small businessman says...
Inner City Press held publication of this article for several days
seeking additional answers and comments from PGA Treki's office. If
and when these are received, they will be published in future
articles on Dr. Treki, his Office and the General Assembly.
* * *
May Threaten UN Economic Crisis Summit, Role of Nephew of GA President
Matthew Russell Lee of Inner City Press at the UN: News Analysis
NATIONS, June 9 -- As industrialized countries' public skepticism has
grown at the UN General Assembly's summit on the global economic
crisis, postponed until later this month, analysts have focused on
General Assembly President Miguel d'Escoto Brockmann's refusal to
simply accept the proposed outcome document drafted by member states.
Inner City Press
is told by well-placed sources that a major reason
for the so-called
Draft-Gate which threatens to undermine the crisis
summit is the presence among the PGA's paid staff of at least two
d'Escoto relatives, and the freedom that he gives them.
Clark is an American staff member who has given numerous lengthly
press conferences about the summit, most recently speaking so
extensively about his views of a world without money that Inner City
Press was not permitted a single question, about some countries'
critique of the draft. At the
time, Inner City Press reported that
Michael Clark previously served with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce,
and trying to open India to U.S. commercial firms.
it can be told, confirmed by d'Escoto Brockmann's spokesman to
credit on June 9: Michael Clark is d'Escoto Brockmann's nephew.
Another niece, Sophia Clark, is d'Escoto Brockmann's Deputy Chief of
These two family
connections were confirmed by spokesman
Enrique Yeves on Tuesday. He noted that out of twenty cabinet
members, only two are relatives of the President, and that these are
"freely designated posts" not subject to competition or
qualifications. They are, however, paid from the UN budget.
president Michele Bachelet, previously scheduled to attend the
summit, has as Inner City Press heard recently canceled, Yeves
confirmed on Tuesday. Few high level officials from industrialized
countries are slated to come.
becoming, as one well placed
source put it, a wasted opportunity. When the UN General Assembly had
a chance to come out with innovative ideas to regulate the global
financial system, he asked, "who did they turn to? Father
Michael Clark, with UNPGA one of two Clarks -- or three?
those parts of the General Assembly not related to Escoto Brockmann
by blood or marriage, one can find dissatisfaction with Michael Clark
and the way d'Escoto has "let him run wild," as one source
put it. This source states that Clark has been trying to find this
next job after d'Escoto Brockmann's year as PGA expires, and that
this has included trying to find some European jobs.
traces changes that Clark made to what was ostensibly d'Escoto
Brockmann's personal draft to subsequent criticism of the draft.
"Father Miguel is taking heat for a problem Michael created,"
the source says, calling it misplaced loyalty.
said for the record that Michael Clark is by no means the only
adviser on the summit, and argued that Clark's appearance at three
press conferences in a row about the summit was not, as one source
put it, a "try out," but simply a product of the travel
schedule of d'Escoto Brockmann and his other advisers. Inner City
Press asked to interview Michael Clark for this story.
such requests to the PGA's advisers go through him, and that answer
would be given by Tuesday at 5 p.m.. Inner City Press hours before
that time also made the request directly to Mr. Clark. After that
deadline, this story is being published, and will be updated. Watch