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Ban Ki-moon Daughter Hired by Douste-Blazy's UNITAID, UN Confirms to ICP

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, December 31 -- The daughter of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has been hired by UNITAID, a UN facility for the purchase of drugs against HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis that is run, or mis-run, by French politician Philippe Douste-Blazy. (Click here & here for previous scoops.)

  Inner City Press asked Ban's top three spokespeople about this on December 27, and on every workday since. Finally at past 4:30 pm on New Years Eve the UN confirmed the hiring, but did not state what rules on nepotism might apply.

  Inner City Press on December 27 asked the UN to "please provide the Secretariat's response to the allegation, received by Inner City Press, that 'Hyun Hee Ban has been hired without a legitimate selection process by the UN agency UNITAID," and that "Philippe Douste-Blazy, chairman of executive board of UNITAID, arranged the deal."

  Specifically, Inner City Press asked, "What rules or safeguards, including regarding the hiring of family members of high UN system officials, apply?"

  Here is the UN's entire New Years Eve response:

From: UN Spokesperson - Do Not Reply [at]
Date: Mon, Dec 31, 2012 at 4:38 PM
Subject: Question
To: Matthew Russell Lee [at]

On UNITAID: We checked with UNITAID. This is their response: Hyun Hee Ban has been hired by UNITAID with a temporary (limited duration, less than six months) contract as a P3 technical officer in Monitoring and Evaluation, reporting to the head of Monitoring and Evaluation in the Department of Operations. She was selected on the basis of her CV, availability in Geneva and the high workload of the Monitoring and Evaluation team. As UNITAID is a partnership hosted by the World Health Organization (WHO), all WHO rules have been adhered to, as with all UNITAID's appointments. Dr. Denis Broun, the Executive Director of UNITAID, was responsible for the hiring.

   To say someone was selected on the basis of their CV is not explaining a recruitment practice. And there is a history here - click here (2007) here (2009, legal threats) and here (2011).

   With all due respect to Hyun Hee Ban's qualification and clearly good intentions, given the obvious pressures and conflict of interest issues raised by a UN related entity employing a direct relative of the Secretary General, a more detailed response that this, and possibly better or at least some rules will be required.

   But that, based on the timing of the response, will have to be in 2013. Happy New Year. Watch this site.

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