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Investigators find UN oil-for-food Procurement system "tainted"
www.chinaview.cn 2005-02-04 09:40:47

    
The chief investigator of the scandal-plagued UN oil-for-food program for Iraq has said that the program's procurement process was "tainted" and its former director Benon Sevan violated rules in selecting purchasers of Iraqi oil.
Former US Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker made the announcement in a commentary in Thursday's Wall Street Journal.
BEIJING, Feb. 4 -- The chief investigator of the scandal-plagued UN oil-for-food program for Iraq has said that the program's procurement process was "tainted" and its former director Benon Sevan violated rules in selecting purchasers of Iraqi oil. 

    Former US Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker is due to release the first interim report on the probe into alleged fraud and corruption in the 67 billion-dollar oil-for-food program later in the day.

    Volcker said his investigative team had found that the procurement process was tainted, "failing to follow the established rules of the organization designed to assure fairness and accountability."

    He added that the process was also affected by "political considerations" in a manner that was "neither transparent nor accountable".

    Volcker also criticized the program's audit process, saying it lacked "the independence, the clear reporting lines and the management responsiveness critical to achieving a fully effective auditing process."

    But Volcker did not mention whether Sevan or any other UN officials had accepted bribes.

    The oil-for-food program, which started in December 1996, allowed Iraq to export oil worth some 67 billion US dollars. The United Nations oversaw Iraq's oil sales and its purchase of humanitarian supplies. The program was shut down in November 2003.

    (Source:CRIENGLISH.com)

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