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As UMOJA Clunks Forward, Board of Auditors Notes PcW Fiasco

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, November 21 -- Last week UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon told the General Assembly, "I am pleased to report that on the first day of this month, Umoja reached a new milestone when it was deployed throughout our peacekeeping operations. Umoja now reaches more than 200 sites around the world from which peacekeeping staff operate."

  But how is UMOJA operating? Previously, Inner City Press reported on cost overruns, nepotism and internal investigations.

  The UN's own Board of Auditors has "note[d] that the issues around commercial management of the ERP project indicate a more systemic weakness in the Administrationís commercial skills, particularly when contracting with major global providers for complex services. The Administration does not have a well-developed approach to determining the most appropriate commercial strategy."

   That is diplomatic. PriceCoopersWaterhouse has been paid $100 million now; it was the only bidder and sources tell Inner City Press the Scope of Work was configured so only PcW could win the Request for Proposals.

  There's much talk of Ian Divers, from Procurement to Change Management and before that appearing in a Wikileaked memo:

"UN Chief of Integrated Support Services (CISS) Ian Divers expressed to emboffs January 15 his view that the AU's "sense of entitlement is out of hand," citing AMIS' refusal on January 12 to permit entry to a UNAMID Joint Logistics warehouse to the Deputy CISS. He said that AMIS has refused to release badly-needed ground-to-air radios and vehicles to UNAMID. Divers added that there is no recognition that most if not all of the equipment was USG-owned and now belongs to UNAMID."

 The UN has purportedly tried to root out corruption from its Enterprise Resource Planning project UMOJA, including by firing its chief Paul van Essche after Inner City Press showed he had falsified the resumes of insiders he wanted to hire. Click here for that.

 But other whistleblower have since told Inner City Press in detail that PriceWaterhouseCoopers delayed through waste the project. PCW was given its first UMOJA contract at time it had been out of the consulting business for five years -- it was not qualified.

  Then PCW was kept in the money by a series of "not to exceed" $6 million contrasts, each time rolled over and extended so that it did not have to be put out to bid.

Soon UMOJA was two years behind schedule. An investigation of it was quashed by the new (and still current) chief of the Office of Internal Oversight Services. See leaked memo here, .

See leaked memo here, exclusively published by Inner City Press.

  But it's not just leaked memos - the UN's own Board of Auditors has slammed UMOJA. But its promotion on TV screens in the UN lobby continue. So it goes at the UN. We'll have more on this. Watch this site.


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