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As UN Guterres Aims To Waste Public Money On 27 New Coordinators Recruitment Not On His Website

By Matthew Russell Lee, CJR Video

UNITED NATIONS GATE, March 16 – How much additional UN waste is caused by the supposed reforms for which UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres sold out, including the Anglophones in Cameroon, is becoming clear. On March 15 in a noon briefing from which he and Guterres banned Inner City Press, spokesman Stephane Dujarric said that fully 27 new Resident Coordinators are being recruited. But other then replacing Kurt Ostby⁩ in Myanmar / Burma, the list of other RC positions up for bid or sale is not on Guterres' website, where only two recruitments are listed: UNICEF and violence against children. That website has also tellingly become more and more out of date in terms of public financial disclose, with Guterres' most recent covering 2016 and omitting payments he took in that year from Gulbenkian Foundation, which tried to sell its oil company to UN briber CEFC China Energy - and STILL no filing for USG Alison Smale. Guterres' UN is corrupt. We'll have more on this. Guterres is directing budget budget cuts up to 5% depending on whether Guterres values the Department or not, while his own spending is undisclosed and not reduced. The money is to be redirected to what many call Guterres' vanity project, the power grab of the UN's Resident Coordinator system from the UN Development Program, to put it under his Deputy SG Amina J. Mohammed (and, the sources say, make the UN even more craven to long time rulers like Cameroon's Paul Biya). On January 15 to the Group of 77 and China, Guterres on this said, " The new Resident Coordinator system and the new generation of Country Teams are now in place, and I am confident that they will deliver more effective support on the ground for Member States and for the people we serve." Right. This supposed reform is in fact causing waste and duplication, as UNDP re-creates its Resident Representative sytem which will in fact have more resources that Guterres' and Mohammed's Coordinators, with little more than a UN paid driver and phone, looking for strong-men to support. The result? When China comes rolling in offering loans in exchange for the right to seized ports and other resources like in Kenya, the UN will be even less of an alternative. This might seem like only incompetence by Guterres - but given his now exposed (by Inner City Press) links with the CEFC China Energy bribery firm, others are beginning to use a word more often used 200 miles to the south: collusion. We'll have more on this. UN Special Political Missions face the largest cuts. Inner City Press which has asked about Guterres' spending and been roughed up while covering the UN Budget Committee and banned since, has been exclusively leaked by UN whistleblowers a copy of Guterres' Controller's memo about the budget cuts. Since Guterres' spokesman Stephane Dujarric refuses to answer Inner City Press' written questions despite a promise to do so by Under Secretary General for Global Communications Alison Smale to UN Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression David Kaye, we publish this portion (tweeted photo) of the internal UN memo here: "The Secretary-General, as part of his ongoing reform proposals,  has informed Member States of his plan to make the United Nations more effective, efficient and nimble with a culture of transparency and accountability, to break down silos and work more collaboratively across pillars, to re-position sustainable development, because development is both an objective in itself and our best tool for preventing conflict and building a future of peace, and to decentralize and deliver results in the field to ensure that no one is left behind.    16. In line with his reform proposals, the Secretary-General plans to strengthen specific development initiatives within the context of the 2020 budget proposals. He has also decided to allocate additional resources for staff development and training, to support shifting the management paradigm with an emphasis on culture and leadership, increased transparency and accountability, and better risk management.     17.Mindful of the financially constrained environment and the historical trends of the programme budgets over the last 10 years, the Secretary-General has also decided that the additional resources for some of the new/extended mandates and initiatives will be financed  using the following approach:  


 (a) Departments/Missions with programme budget resources (regular budget) less than $30 million should strive to maximize mandate delivery by pursuing opportunities for efficiencies within their current resource level.

(b) Departments in the development pillar, other than those covered by (a) above, should strive to maximize mandate delivery by pursuing efficiencies with a 1% reduction from their current resource level; the cumulative reduction of these departments will be offset by a corresponding overall increase in specific development initiatives to be determined by the Secretary-General. These departments should also strive to include a greater allocation for projects wherever feasible.

(c) All other departments, excluding special political missions, should strive to maximize mandate delivery by pursuing opportunities for efficiencies, with a 2.5% reduction from their current resource level.

(d) Special political missions, other than those covered by (a) above, should strive to maximize mandate delivery by pursuing opportunities for efficiencies with a 5% reduction from their current resource level.   

In setting these priorities and deciding resource allocations, the Secretary-General has been mindful of the trend of budget increases and reductions for various departments and activities over several years.  He expects departments to formulate their proposals to reflect prudent management of resources, while fully implementing mandates.   18. The maximum budget levels for each budget section, including for special political missions, will be communicated shortly; the approved baseline for 2018-2019 has to be determined by taking into account the decisions, in the just-concluded main session of the General Assembly.   19. While determining the optimal distribution and composition of resources for your area of responsibility, please bear in mind the following:  a) Proposals can only be made within or below the maximum budget level communicated to you, unless the reductions are shared across departments and offices performing similar support functions and the joint budget level is met.  b) Consider restructuring for greater efficiency and effectiveness, pursue opportunities for consolidation or redistribution of functions or a change in current staffing levels, leveraging vacancies wherever possible. c) Identify opportunities for re-engineering of processes, including leveraging technology to streamline and improve existing processes or productivity. d) Reductions that impact services provided to other departments or offices, e.g. printing, IT services, should be discussed and agreed between respective departments to ensure no disruption to programme delivery and resource gaps.  e) Indirect costs for Umoja (deployment, data preparation, training, etc.) will need to be absorbed within the maximum budget levels.  f) Inflation and exchange rate adjustments for posts and non-post resources will be incorporated, by the Office of Programme Planning, Finance and Budget, into the budget proposals at a later stage through re-costing. 


 g) Any anticipated redeployments from the respective budget sections to support Global Service Delivery Model (GSDM), should not count as part of the efficiencies referenced in paragraph 17 above, while such redeployments are being determined in the coming months. Further adjustments to the respective budget levels will be communicated to those who are impacted by the General Assembly’s decision on GSDM, by the end of March 2019." Inner City Press has also exclusively covered this GSDM - leading to Guterres having it roughed up and banned from the UN, 190 days and counting.

   When the UN Budget Committee met on Saturday night 22 December 2018 in a UN that SG Antonio Guterres has banned Inner City Press from for its coverage of the Committee and of Guterres' conflicts of interest, there were fights on Responsibility to Protect, Gaza and kicking Human Resources Management down the road. Tweeted thread here.

  Cuba made its annual amendment to say Responsibility to Protect was never approved by the UN. Austria for the EU responded it was approved in UNSC Resolution 1366 in 2001. Cuba's amendment had 24 yes votes, 68 no, and 48 abstentions including India.
   Israel put forward an amendment to not fund an inquiry into Gaza. It got, voting with it, the US, Liberia, and Australia the country of the Committee's chair Gillian Elizabeth Bird. Twelve abstained.
   Human Resources Management failed, with Egypt for the Group of 77 blaming it on Guterres' Secretariat giving documents too late. Guterres was long gone, refusing to answer to where or how much he is spending. (Inner City Press ran a scoop seeming to require responses by OIOS, even impeachment, here.)
   Egypt mourned again this failure at the end of the Fifth at 8 pm, and wished well incoming G77 chair Palestine. Bring it on - but hold Guterres and his regime of censorship for corruption to account. While UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres was refusing throughout 2018 to begin any UN audit into China Energy Fund Committee, implicated in the UN bribery prosecution US v Patrick Ho, Guterres had a secret.

   Guterres was and it seems still is connected with and compensated by a company which was trying to sell its oil and gas business to China Energy Fund Committee in 2018. Guterres' failure to disclose and refusal to audit was a direct conflict of interest, which he has tried to cover up by roughing up and banning Inner City Press which asked him about it. (See January 2018 press conference here, July 2018 roughing up by Guterres' UN Security here, banning letter via Press Freedom Tracker here.)

   For years Guterres received money as a board member of the Calouste Galbenkian Foundation, which despite its name is the 100% owner of Partex Oil and Gas. Partex has operations in Angola, Abu Dhabi, Brazil, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, Oman and Portugal. It was to a Portuguese court that Guterres, while justifying no listing some of his income, disclosed in 2016 that he was paid at least € 2735 per month for his position with the Gulbenkian Foundation.

   But while a now deleted Foundation web page (archived here) stated that Guterres continued with Gulbenkian into 2018, Guterres did not list it on his most recent, and so far lone, UN Public Financial Disclosure, which covered 2016 ("Disclosing financial and other interests for the 2016 reporting year").

  So why did Guterres disclose his position with the Club of Madrid, but not with the Gulbenkian Foundation / Partex Oil and Gas? It is worth noting that Guterres' wife Catarina Vaz Pinto has also been connected to Gulbenkian.

   Following the roughing up and banning from the UN of Inner City Press which has covered the CEFC scandal throughout, Guterres' head of Global Communications Alison Smale promised UN Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression David Kaye, who asked, that the UN would still answer Inner City Press' written questions.

   But as 2018 came to a close Guterres' spokesmen Stephane Dujarric and Farhan Haq left unanswered 36 questions in a row from Inner City Press, including this: “Beyond the 35 questions from Inner City Press you refused to answer this week, this is a request on deadline that you (1) state when SG Guterres left his position on the Gulbenkian Foundation,

(2) state why Gulbenkian was not listed on SG Guterres' public financial disclosure which covered 2016;

(3) explain how it is not a conflict of interest for SG Guterres to have refused to start an audit of CEFC in the UN, as requested by Inner City Press in January 2018, given CEFC's bid for the oil business of Gulbenkian.

Also, again, state why under SG Guterres there have been no updates to the UN public financial disclosures since those filed for 2016. Also, again, explain your refusal to answer any of Inner City Press' questions this week despite USG Smale's statements to GAP, me and UNSR David Kaye. On deadline.”

   The question was also sent to the e-mail addresses of Guterres, his chief of staff Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, his Deputy Amina J. Mohammed, and Smale, who earlier in the week told Inner City Press she would take “under advisement” her 17 August 2018 pretextual withdrawal of Inner City Press decade long UN media accreditation.
  It seems clear that Guterres and his team have engaged in censorship for corruption, to conceal a blatant conflict of interest by Guterres. It has been raised by Inner City Press to the UN Office of Internal Oversight Services, and others.  Watch this site.

Back on 5 December 2018 Patrick Ho was found guilty of seven of eight counts of violating the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and month laundering. (He was only not guilty on money laundering in Chad - where the bribe was not through any US bank but in cash, $2 million in a gift box). The evidence showed that the NGO he ran, China Energy Fund Committee, used its ongoing UN consultative status to pay bribes to Ugandan foreign minister - and Ashe's successor as President of the UN General Assembly -- Sam Kutesa.. He was working with precedessor Vuk Jeremic while Jeremic was UN PGA. CEFC even offered weapons, tanks and drones, to Chad's long time president Idriss Deby for oil blocks or a stake in the Chad Cameroon pipeline. (Inner City Press published documents here.)

The night of the verdict I asked UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres what he will do to clean up the UN, where he has left CEFC without any audit, still in consultative status with the UN. On his way from his Mercedes to a glitzy fundraiser including George and Amal Clooney, Guterres refused to answer. The next day when asked by another journalist why Guterres had refused to answer banned Inner City Press' question, his spokesman Stephane Dujarric claimed that the UN has “cooperated” with the prosecution. But the bribery group remains in the UN, unaudited.

Why has the case of US versus Ho, and now the guilty verdicts, garnered relatively so little interest, with the corruption of the UN exposed by it scarcely mentioned all? SG Guterres is hoping it goes away. In terms of corruption, he did not disclose and refuses to answer on the African business links of his son Pedro Guimarães e Melo De Oliveira Guterres. He refuses to answer how much he spends in public funds flying to his home in Lisbon at least sixteen times sofar as SG.

   So CEFC remains an accredited non governmental organization with the UN's Economic and Social Council, while investigative Inner City Press for which I have been covering the case has been dis-accredited by and ousted from the UN, put on a list of those permanently banned without notice, due process or appeal. On December 7 I was informed I am banned from a “UN Human Rights” event on December 10 to be addressed by Guterres and his human rights commissioner Michelle Bachelet. But this reporting will not stop - Guterres' corruption of the UN must be addressed, through oversight or as is discussed elsewhere, impeachment. From the lofty goals of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to Guterres' censorship for corruption is UNacceptable.

  With UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet and her Deputy Andrew Gilmour set to speak in the UN on human rights day on December 10, Inner City Press responded to an invitation and was told, "Thank you for registering to attend the Human Rights Day event at the United Nations on Monday 10 December. On Monday, please come to the UN Visitors’ Gate on First Avenue opposite 45th street starting at 2pm, at which time entry passes will be distributed."

Then, past six p.m. on Friday, December 7 this from Bachelet's and Gilmour's Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights: "Dear Matthew, We have received notification from UN Security that your name was flagged as "BARRED" on the list we submitted for passes for Monday's event (3pm, ECOSOC Chamber). We will therefore not have a pass for you and are unable to facilitate entry.
Thank you for your interest and best regards,
OHCHR New York Office." Photo of email here.

   Inner City Press immediately wrote back, to the sender and Bachelet and her assistant, to Andrew Gilmour and to the moderator of the event, "Particularly since you are the UN Office of the High Commissioner for *Human Rights,* did you not ask why a journalist who asks the Secretary General and his spokesmen about the killings in Cameroon, Burundi, UN corruption, UN peacekeepers' sexual abuse of civilians, and Sri Lanka, is “BARRED” from attending your human rights event - without any hearing or appeal? I will appreciate your Office's answer to this."  We'll have more on this.

 Bachelet gave a speech on October 15 in the UN's Third Committee, she emphasized a prioritization of social and economic rights and said one of the officials of her office is "on mission in Silicon Valley" in the US. There are questions about this - but Inner City Press which has covered human rights and the UN for more than a decade was for the first time banned from access a High Commissioner's speech. This has been raised repeated to Bachelet since she took office but she has so far done nothing, not even responded. Meanwhile on October 12 Cameroon, from whose Paul Biya Secretary General Antonio Guterres took a golden statue and favors in the Fifth (Budget) Committee and remains silent on the slaughter of Anglophones, was elected to a seat on the UN Human Rights Council. This system is failing - but if Bachelet cannot even answer on Guterres maintaining a secret banned list including not only Inner City Press but also "political activists" - and anti-corruption campaigners - then the UN of Guterres has hit its newest low.


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