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After Sandy, UN Left in Cold, Three Hour Dispute of Power Cut Off Questioned

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, November 8 -- Impacts on the UN of its "flawed" response to Hurricane Sandy are not confined to the water-logged third sub-basement, from which many staff offices have had to be evacuated.

  On Thursday morning, the UN Security Council moved its consultations from their normal room into the big Chamber -- explicitly due to a lack of heat, Council sources exclusively told Inner City Press.

   Beyond the Budget Committee session Monday which slammed the Department of Management chief Yukio Takasu and Security chief Gregory Starr, on issues ranging from lack of communications to member states to ineffective use of $50 million spent on a data backup center in New Jersey, other questions have arisen.

   Sources exclusive tell Inner City Press of a three hour delay on the Monday of Super Storm Sandy in which "no one could decide who has the authority to turn off electrical power at the UN." Some say this was the clearest, though still little known, impact of absence of leadership.

   The Security locker room in 3B, which Inner City Press asked about, is being moved across First Avenue into the DC2 building. Other 3B staff were told to only pick up items of sentimental value, and to disinfect their clothes. But will there be any OSHA certified inspection?

   Meanwhile UN staff in publishing are telling the Fifth (Budget) Committee their fears that management will use the water damage to equipment in their unit as an excuse for further outsourcing (similar to the way claims processing for the UN Medical Insurance Plan is not being bid out.)

  The publishing issues may be raised by the Group of 77 and China. Watch this site.

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