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January 8, 2005
30 Days Hath September, April, June, And November

That little mnemonic could have saved the United Nations a few million dollars in contractor fees, according to UN audits demonstrating outright incompetence and relatively minor corruption. Among other issues, the UN completely missed the repeated billing for 31 days of work in June over several years:

Internal audits conducted by the United Nations of its oil-for-food program revealed lapses in U.N. oversight that allowed contractors to overcharge by hundreds of thousands of dollars, according to copies obtained by The Associated Press.

Two of the audits examined irregularities including overcharging by two companies who were hired to monitor oil sales and the import of humanitarian goods under the program. Another detailed financial mismanagement by a U.N. agency administering humanitarian aid under the program. ...

But the panel distributed the documents to congressional investigators two days early. A congressional aide provided the AP with copies of three of the 56 audits, including one that found that the United Nations was billed over several years for 31 days of work in June, which only has 30 days.

It's hard to believe that the UN had no one who could look at a calendar to see that June has only 30 days. Not only did they miss this once, the UN apparently failed to detect this every year of the program's run. These overpayments comprise only a small part of the general mismanagement by UN staff and corruption by their contractors. The Volcker commission promised no red flags for the massive graft that the US Senate has uncovered, but the audits show enough incompetence to discourage anyone from allowing the UN to run any significant aid program in the future.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at January 8, 2005 10:53 PM

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» It keeps getting worse from Media Lies
Via lgf comes an article in the New York Post revealing that the Oil For Food scandal (UNSCAM) is even worse than was previously thought. Iraqi officials have recently implicated more U.N. staffers in bribe taking during the oil-for-food program in ... [Read More]

Tracked on January 8, 2005 11:43 PM

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