www.wolfowitzresign.com May 21, 2007

"Mission (Actually) Accomplished!" We are retiring. Good luck with the search for a successor.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Good Night and Good Luck

Mission accomplished, we are retiring www.wolfowitzresign.com and the Real World Bank News. Unlike like some people, we know when it is time to go.

The website will stay active indefinitely. You can still reach us by email at wolfowitzresign@gmail.com. Enjoy browsing the treasures of the archive.

The website has been a huge success, we note modestly. We received thousands of visitors from 101 countries, browsing in 35 languages, and we are still top of the list in Google's search engine. No mean feat for a bunch of "renegade Bank staffers", see Business Week.

We would like to thank the good people of www.avaaz.org for the YouTube video " The Bank", which brought much needed laughter to so many -- 80,000 views at last count.

Our new best friends at Government Accountability Project (GAP) www.whistleblower.org and www.worldbankpresident.org will keep you informed and up to date on the search for a successor. They will also be delving into the misdeeds of the remaining "infamous five".

The infamous five are of course, Robin "Rottweiller" Cleveland (is she still here?), Suzanne "Augean stables" Rich Folsom, Juan Jose "say-a-novena-for-me" Daboub, Ana "where's my lithium?" Palacio, and Karl "how far under this radar can I limbo?" Jackson.

There is so much dirt on all of these miscreants it is hard to know where to start. So we leave it to you. Two down, Five to Go!

Good Night and Good Luck

Friday, May 18, 2007

Feedback from staff to Wolfowitz letter

Reuters: Wolfowitz trims daily role, plans staff outreach

Eds note: His letter works best if you play a laughter track in the background

  • Flooded with phone calls? You? May be calls from Cheney and Bush and Riza and Palacio and Daboub and INT and Robin and Kevin. Bring them all to Africa, on your way - all of you.
  • PW deserves the same amount of respect he demonstrates toward the Bank.
  • please don't go to africa. respect our continent.
  • PW's letter - as usual - lacks sense of reality.
  • I hope this is going to be the last letter I have to read from him. Flooded with phone calls? Give me a break!.
  • PW, you have no dignity. No sense of reality. Go away! ...
  • PW: STOP THE NONSENSE NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Please just leave. You can take all your loyal employees with you. Who are you kidding??
  • six weeks to meet with and thank his supporters?????
  • PW must be truly out of his mind. Why doesn't he just leave? Does he really think he can still travel around representing the WB? Where is his sense for reality?
  • Who will staff an Africa trip? Is he going to take his loyal staff on a trip with him? We would recommend Robin Cleveland, Ana Palacio, Suzanne Rich Folsom, Juan Jose Daboub, and Karl Jackson.

Wolfowitz Letter to Board

Management is in charge. I may make a trip to Africa.

In a letter to the Board this afternoon Wolfowitz outlined his transition plans:

"I am confident the board sessions can be handled well by the Managing Director with the relevant portfolio. I believe they can manage most requests for outside meetings. On policy matters I would defer to the appropriate MD or Vice President."

"I may make a farewell trip to Africa at the request of a number of leaders but would consult with you (Board) before making any plans."

"I do not plan to continue routine briefings. I have no expectation of being involved in personnel actions."

"The most important assignment I feel I have ahead is to take the time to meet individually with staff who have been so loyal and effective in fulfilling the Bank's mission. I owe them my personal thanks and appreciation." See comment for full letter.

Transparency International Calls on Bank to Strengthen Integrity

Berlin, 18 May 2007 - The departure of Paul Wolfowitz as president of the World Bank opens the door to new leadership to take the Bank and its vital Governance and Anti-corruption Strategy forward. Implementation of the strategy is critical if the Bank is to fulfil its mission of reducing poverty.

Senior Management Messages to World Bank Staff

Sr. VP Marwan Muasher to EXT Staff -
We must look ahead. As the communications professionals of the Bank we have a critical role beginning right now -- in promoting our internal healing and re-establishing the Bank's reputation with our external stakeholders. Let us focus on these tasks. The Bank's strong values and principles remain as firm as ever.

VP Jim Adams to East Asia Pacific Staff-
I hope now we can refocus all our efforts on the considerable development challenges that our region continues to face. This is the work that matters to the people of our region and it is the work that I am sure you want the Bank to be known for. I am committed to working with you to underline the Bank’s good name in this region and I trust that you will join me in that mission in the weeks and months ahead.

VP Shigeo Katsu to Europe and Central Asia Staff-
As we move forward, we need to continue to work together to rebuild faith in our institution among partners and stakeholders throughout ECA and restore the trust that is essential to our business. To do this, I need your continuing help in showing what the World Bank is all about and redoubled efforts in helping our clients achieve a better life for their citizens. Let’s focus all our energies now on serving our clients.

VP Joy Phumaphi to Human Development Staff-
So, let us gather our thoughts, and remind ourselves again of why we care so passionately about the work we do. Let us remind ourselves of the 77 million young boys and girls, children who yearn to go to primary school but cannot get past the front door of the classroom; the millions of others who are malnourished and stunted; and the many men and women who live hand-to-mouth in their old age because they have no pensions or savings to live on in their final years; these are the many sides of poverty and inequality that we care about so passionately.

Chief Economist & Sr. VP Francois Bourguignon to Development Economics Staff-
Yesterday's Board decision comes as a relief, even though its presentation tends to hide the real nature of the crisis which has just been, at last, resolved. The Bank can now move toward what will be the next steps, which include a very challenging presidential transition. It will be important to make sure that the Bank can function effectively as soon as possible. This involves restoring the trust and credibility of the Bank in all of its activities.

VP Daniela Gressani to Middle East/ North Africa Staff-
I hope that we can all work together to repair the damage that our institution has suffered through this controversy. This will require that we restore and rebuild trust and confidence, among us staff and with our clients and partners. These are large challenges but I am confident that building on our greatest asset -- our mutual respect -- we can overcome the present difficulties and deliver on our mission.

VP Danny Leipziger to Poverty Reduction & Economic Management Staff-
For this reason, I am confident that we will overcome this crisis, drawing upon your professionalism and commitment to the goals of the Bank. This will need to be accompanied both by a process of internal healing as well as by actions to address critical management issues that have arisen. I hope to work with others in senior management to try and restore internal governance.

VP Pamela Cox to Latin America/ Caribbean Staff-
With your determination, I am confident that we will be able to turn the crisis into an opportunity to regain the trust of all our stakeholders through our words and deeds, ensuring that the Bank and the LAC region emerge from this crisis a stronger and more effective development partner. This will take time, effort and active listening to the voices outside and inside the institution. Good governance begins at home and we know that in order to promote good policies abroad we will need to build a more inclusive, transparent and accountable institution.

Executive VP Lars Thunell to IFC Staff-
I would like to thank you for all your hard work and professionalism during these recent weeks. This has been a difficult time for all of us as the Board works through its process concerning Bank leadership. With the end of the fiscal year in sight, our work program is well on track, and that is due to your efforts. I am personally grateful that you have kept your focus on our clients and our mission to create opportunities and improve lives.

VP Praful Patel to South Asia Staff-
I know you all care deeply about what has been happening and while many of you have followed the very public unfolding of this crisis, I know that at the same time you have maintained a strong delivery of the region's important work. This dual focus has left us all feeling stretched and a little exhausted but I do want to thank you for persisting with the work you care about so much.

See comment for full statements.

Staff Comments on Wolfowitz Resignation

Reuters Reaction to Wolfowitz's Resignation

"I think it creates a great opportunity for us to open up a fair and transparent process for the selection of the next president. We're relieved the situation is over," said Caroline Kende-Robb, Sector Manager Social Development.

"I just returned yesterday from a mission in West Africa where I was beginning to feel most acutely the impact of the crisis ... in terms of the legitimacy we have in advocating good governance. We've got a job to do now in rebuilding our credibility on those issues, and it's going to be easier now that Wolfowitz is gone," said Daniel Owen, Coordinator of Community-Driven Development in Social Development Department.

News Round Up, The Afterglow

New York Times- Wolfowitz Resigns From World Bank
Washington Post- Ending Battle, Wolfowitz Resigns From World Bank
Financial Times- Wolfowitz steps down as World Bank president
Wall Street Journal- Wolfowitz quits World Bank as U.S. relents

Ten things Wolfowitz could do while on administrative leave

  1. Go to charm school, sort out that potty mouth problem.
  2. Learn to knit socks. We know you need new ones. check out Socks 101
  3. Foundation for the Future are looking for a new Chief Financial Officer. We know you are good at numbers, especially large round numbers, and the position is based in Beirut, so Shaha could come too. Perfect, hey?
  4. Get rid of that cloud that has you so preoccupied. Learn more about cloud seeding and really make it rain. (see comment for more)

Blue Ribbons Became Attire Of Their Ire

Washington Post

Could it have been the blue ribbons? Style filters down, babe.

"The ribbons were intended to be a constructive act by the staff to show support for a common goal, which is good governance," says Alison Cave, head of the World Bank Staff Association.

"The staff needed a challenge," said Morallina Fanwar George, former staff association chairman and ribbon organizer. "They needed something productive." (Later, Wolfowitz himself was seen wearing a blue ribbon around the office, which he claimed -- wait for it -- was a symbol of malaria awareness.) By close of business yesterday, the blue ribbons had become a new symbol -- of victory."

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Staff Association Response to Resignation

May 17, 2007 -- We ask the Board to ensure that between now and June 30th, the following measures are implemented immediately:

  • Place Mr. Wolfowitz on Administrative Leave.
  • Appoint an acting-President to manage the institution and to make day-to-day decisions.
  • Follow Bank procedures regarding protection of documents, records, access to electronic files, and all Bank resources.
World Bank Group Staff Association Executive Committee.
See comment for full statement.

Who will be acting...?

"The Board will start the nomination process for a new President immediately" Board statement.

FT Wolfowitz bows to pressure and quits World Bank
Washington Post Wolfowitz Resigns From World Bank
New York Times Wolfowitz to Leave the World Bank
Globe and Mail Wolfowitz to resign from World Bank

Wolfowitz has resigned. It is official. His scheduled date of departure is June 30, 2007. The Board will begin discussing interim arrangements tomorrow morning.

The first order of business will be selection of an acting president. Most likely candidates are Graeme Wheeler, Managing Director, Vincenzo LaVia, Chief Financial Officer, or Lars Thunell head of IFC.

Board sources say Wolfowitz will begin his new role at Foundation for the Future on Monday. Apparently they are looking for a chief financial officer.

Obviously he will not be coming to the office. Word is he will be on administrative leave.

Plans for the dismissal of Robin Cleveland, Suzanne Rich Folsom, Juan Jose Daboub, Ana Palacio, and Karl Jackson are also being discussed.

Wolfowitz Resigns. It is official

Statement of Executive Directors

The Executive Directors acknowledge Mr. Wolfowitz’s decision to resign as President of the World Bank Group, effective end of the fiscal year (June 30, 2007). The Board will start the nomination process for a new President immediately.

Statement of Paul Wolfowitz

I have concluded that it is in the best interests of those whom this institution serves for that mission to be carried forward under new leadership. Therefore, I am announcing today that I will resign as President of the World Bank Group effective at the end of the fiscal year (June 30, 2007). See comment for full statement.

Word from the staff....

....we urge the Board to reach (a decision) today ....

Staff Association Update
May 17, 2007

Dear Colleagues,

The staff of the World Bank have waited, patiently and sometimes impatiently, while the Board has conducted its inquiry into matters relating to the President. We have allowed space for due process and time for all of the facts to come out. These facts, as reflected in the Ad Hoc Group's report and Mr. Wolfowitz's responses, are clear. The outcome should not be in doubt.
See comment for entire letter.

Word from the board....

....he's got the wrong date on his resignation letter.

It appears Mr. Wolfowitz has drafted his resignation letter but it has the wrong date. It seems he has dated the resignation letter mid June. Apparently he believes this will give him time for that nasty cloud to shift. The Board is not at all impressed.

"The letter should obviously be dated today, May 17. Can he not even date a letter correctly?" asked one board member in despair.

Robert Bennett, Wolfowitz's lawyer said yesterday that "Mr. Wolfowitz will not resign under this cloud". It's not a cloud, it's a maelstrom.

Word is that the Board is looking at a list of possible acting presidents to take over once Wolfowitz goes. The candidates for filling those shoes, hopefully wearing better socks, include Graeme Wheeler, Lars Thunell, and Vincenzo la Via. Juan Jose Daboub is not on the list. Strange.

Ana Palacio moving on already.....?

Ana Palacio signed a letter published in yesterday's International Herald Tribune as "former foreign minister of Spain", not in her current capacity as World Bank General Counsel.

Why Ana? Are you planning on moving on from the Bank soon? (say it ain't so!). The letter was addressed to "the Turkish people from their European friends" on the topic of EU accession. Do the Turks really need a friend like you, Ana?

Our favorite pieces from the report...... f**k you

The report issued by the Bank's Board this week shows clearly that Paul Wolfowitz intentionally abused his office for the benefit of his girlfriend and then attempted to cover up his actions. His claims of acting in good faith and "making a mistake" don't jibe with what the ad hoc group found. Here is a round up of some of our favorite pieces....

Wolfowitz knew that it was outside the rules.
Mr. Coll (head of human resources): I raised the issues that these were outside the Staff Rules on several occasions. And given the fact that they were outside the Rules, I requested that the instructions were written (annex 10, pg 39, lines 14-18). Mr Coll: There is no doubt that the President knew or had been made aware of by me that this was outside the Rules (annex 10, pg 41, lines 15-17).

Wolfowitz actively sought to conceal the terms of the arrangement.
[A] decision by was taken by Wolfowitz not to consult the World Bank General Counsel or any other member of the World Bank Legal Vice Presidency.

The Group also finds that Mr. Wolfowitz not only took this decision, but that he directed his Vice President for Human Resources, Mr. Coll, not to consult with Mr. Danino or anyone else in the Legal Vice Presidency despite Mr. Coll's expressed desire to do so (main report pg 35, para 98).

The idea that the General Counsel could not advise both the Ethics Committee and the President defies logic, as the Ethics Committee and the President share the same interest which is to protect the institution from legal and reputational harm (main report pg 36, para 100).

Wolfowitz threatened retaliation.
Mr. Coll: And he also told me that, in no uncertain terms, that--to tell friends, people like Shengman, Rathbani [ph.] and Jerry Rice to get out of his way and stop attacking him. And he asked me to tell my friends to stop doing that. And he also stated very clearly that if these people fuck with me or Shaha. I have enough on them to fuck them, too. Those were the words (annex 10, pg 68, lines 17-22 & pg 69, lines 1-2).

Board reconvenes

The Board resumed its deliberations at 2 pm today after a short break for lunch. It was not clear what the subject of its deliberations would be for the afternoon.

Bush voices 'regret'

AFP: US President George W. Bush expressed "regret" over the favoritism scandal engulfing World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz as the bank's board deliberated his fate for a third straight day.

"I applaud his vision, I respect him a lot, and I regret it's come to this," Bush said in answer to a reporter's question about the embattled head of the poverty-fighting development lender. See comment for full story

Wolfowitz friend says, "Paul has no plan"

Karl Jackson, has reportedly told numerous World Bank and diplomatic pals of his that "Paul has no plan. Everything is ad hoc, reactive -- first we go this way, then we go that." If his friends are saying that, imagine what Wolfowitz's enemies think. Read more.

"He sounds like Tony Soprano," a British columnist wrote of World Bank President Paul D. Wolfowitz's angry threats to "fxxx with" World Bank senior staff members. To one blogger, Wolfowitz sounds like Richard Nixon.

Wonkette, The DC Gossip continues to follow the story with Wolfowitz to Resign and Spend More Time on his Lawn.

And, in all seriousness, Japan still supports Wolfowitz. Reuters

Bush says Wolfowitz seeking what's best for bank

May 17 (Reuters) - President George W. Bush said today that World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz has an interest in doing what is best for the bank, but declined to comment on his future at the institution.

As the World Bank's board was meeting behind closed doors to discuss a possible deal in which Wolfowitz would resign, Bush said, "I regret that it's come to this."

"All I can tell you is Paul Wolfowitz has an interest in what's best for the bank," Bush said at a news conference with British Prime Minister Tony Blair. See comments for full story.

News Round Up, May 17, 2007

Washington Post- Wolfowitz Hangs On As Ouster Hits Wall; Day-Long Standoff Ends Unresolved; Talks to Resume
New York Times- Wolfowitz said to push for deal to let him quit
WSJ- Wolfowitz Exit Wouldn't End World Bank Woes --- Policy, Succession Fights Loom as Besieged Chief Starts Endgame Talks
Financial Times- Wolfowitz working on resignation deal

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Board adjourns, no negotiations took place

Washington D.C. May 16, 2007 -- The Board of Executive Directors of the World Bank adjourned this evening saying that they were continuing to discuss the report of the ad hoc group and its recommendations, and had not been negotiating an exit deal for Paul Wolfowitz. They will reconvene at 9 am Thursday.

"We spent the entire afternoon discussing the report. We did not talk about exit terms or deals for Wolfowitz," said a Board member who had been present. Wolfowitz was not present at today's board meeting.

"We have a process and we are continuing with that process," said the Board member.

The adjournment was followed by a statement from Robert Bennett, Wolfowitz's lawyer, who said Wolfowitz will not resign under the current "cloud" and would rather push the matter to a vote of the bank's board to clear his name.

"Mr. Wolfowitz will not resign under this cloud and he will rather put this matter to a full vote," Bennett told Reuters.

Worldbankpresident.org down, Sabotage Suspected

In what appears to be a carefully timed attack, the worldbankpresident.org blog has been taken off line by unknown parties. The site, established two years ago to track the selection process which resulted in Wolfowitz's appointment, has been a mecca for journalists, activists and others seeking up to date and inside information on what is happening to the World Bank president.
See comment for full story

Wolfowitz Said to Be Working on Resignation Deal

New York Times Wolfowitz Said to Be Working on Resignation Deal
Washington Post Bank Board Negotiating Resignation of Wolfowitz

Wolfowitz support wanes as World Bank meets on his fate

WASHINGTON, May 16, 2007 (AFP) - World Bank directors were meeting today to discuss the fate of president Paul Wolfowitz amid reports a compromise deal had been reached to pave the way for his resignation over a damaging favoritism scandal... ABC News reported, citing bank officials, that Wolfowitz was near an agreement to resign, perhaps as early as Wednesday, in a face-saving compromise deal. See comments for full story

Petition Urges EDs to Adopt Merit-Based Leadership Appointments

This urgent recommendation is backed by 185 signatures. To add your name to the list, email Jamie Baker at jbaker@new-rules.org.
The convention that the US government designates the president of the World Bank should be abandoned and replaced with selection procedures that reflect two key principles: transparency of process, and competence of prospective leadership without regard to national origin.
See comments for full letter and list of signators

ABC News - Wolfowitz to Resign This Afternoon?

May 16 2007-World Bank officials say the bank's board is completing an "exit strategy" that will allow World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz to resign this afternoon and "still save some face"... The decision is likely today, officials say, because Wolfowitz had been scheduled to leave tonight for a European trip.

World Bank Board adjourns at U.S. request

"This is a desperate attempt by the United States to buy time. They know he has to go and they just need some time to get it right," said a board member.

US Executive Director Eli Debevoise told the Board, "We need more time to think through the issues."

REUTERS MAY 16- The World Bank board, considering a panel's report critical of bank President Paul Wolfowitz, has adjourned until 2:30 p.m. (1830 GMT) at the request of the United States, bank and board sources said today.

Trevor Manuel Speaks Out, Says "C'est la vie"

May 16 (Bloomberg)-- South African Finance Minister Trevor Manuel said "there should be a parting of the ways" after an investigation found that Wolfowitz had violated conflict-of-interest rules... "I think we must live with the decision by the executive board," Manuel said in an interview in Shanghai, where he is attending the annual general meeting of the African Development Bank. "It's unfortunate but c'est la vie."

U.S. Needs to Take Responsibility

Board Members reject U.S. proposal "they need to take responsibility for their man"

Washington D.C., May 16, 2007 -- World Bank board members expressed their irritation today at attempts by the White House to cut a back room deal yesterday in the Wolfowitz debacle and said that the Bush administration needed to step up and take responsibility for their appointee.

Board members said the attempt, via phone calls with G7 Finance Ministers Tuesday, to cut a behind the scenes deal was "completely unacceptable".

"We have acted in good faith and undertaken a thorough review of the facts with extensive due diligence. That review has been presented in the report of the ad hoc committee. The evidence is utterly damning. He acted inappropriately and attempted to cover it up by concealing it from the Bank's general counsel," said the board member.

"We are not going to undo this lengthy process now and bow to pressure to cut some back room deal," the board member said.

Board sentiment among all members has considerably hardened since the release of the report, which gives copious evidence of wrong doing on the part of Wolfowitz. The tone of the report and its summary also indicated growing frustration with Wolfowitz's lack of respect for the institution. Armed with this evidence, board members from developing countries are understood to be less reluctant than before to take a stand against the United States and call for Wolfowitz's resignation.

"They (the United States) need to take responsibility for their man. They appointed him. He has done wrong and they need to call on him to go," another board member said.

New Job For Wolfie - Ambassador to Iraq?

FT, Letter May 16 2007- Send Wolfowitz to Iraq
"It is a country Mr Wolfowitz knows well. He helped to destroy it; so now let him rebuild it. Since his girlfriend is an expert on Iraq, she could go along too." - Eugene Versluysen

Berlin, Will He, Won't He?

FT Observer - The German finance ministry has the delicate matter of deciding whether to set a place at the table for Wolfowitz at a conference near Berlin this week... Amid rumours that the bank's board would at any moment decide on Wolfowitz's fate, a senior finance ministry official told journalists yesterday he was ready for all eventualities. "As of midday today we are still expecting him," he said, looking at his watch. "We'll just have to wait and see."
See comments for full article

Role of State Department to be investigated

Financial Times, May 16 2007 The US State Department has launched an inquiry into its role in helping Paul Wolfowitz resolve conflicts of interest that arose when he became president of the World Bank, say officials. The department is reviewing anomalies in security vetting and legal complications in the transfer of Shaha Riza from the bank to its Middle East section, said two officials.

Wolfowitz Cancels Trip to Slovenia

Bled, Solvenia 16 May (STA) - World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz, who is embroiled in a scandal involving a generous pay package for his girlfriend and faces a vote of no confidence from the bank's board, was expected to attend as well, but he will not be coming. See comments for full story

Germany slams Wolfowitz as bank board meets

BERLIN, May 16 (Reuters) - Germany on Wednesday urged World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz to resign his post and said he would not be welcome at an Africa forum the bank is holding next week in Berlin should he refuse to go.

"He would do the bank and himself a great service if he resigned," German Development Minister Heidemarie Wieczorek-Zeul, one of Wolfowitz's strongest critics, told reporters. "It would be the best thing for all concerned."

Should he fail to give up his post, she advised him not to take part in a two-day World Bank forum on development aid for Africa which starts Monday in the German capital.
See comments for full story

News Round Up, May 16, 2007

WSJ- Wolfowitz's Support Diminishes --- White House Wavers As World Bank President Continues to Fight for Job
NYT- Bush Opens Door to Wolfowitz's Resigning Voluntarily
Washington Post- White House Support for Wolfowitz Wavers
Washington Post, Editorial- World-Class Mess; No one's looking good at the World Bank.
Financial Times- Wolfowitz in final plea to keep job

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Canada Comes Out of the Closet

WASHINGTON (Reuters) May 15 2007 - The US failed to win the support of key allies in the Group of Seven over World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz's leadership, with only Japan standing by Washington, a bank board source said Tuesday.

"Japan was aligned with the United States, but others, including Canada, were against Wolfowitz continuing," the European source told Reuters, following a conference call of G7 officials. The G7 comprises the United States, Japan, Canada, Italy, France, Germany and Britain.

US fails to win extra time in Wolfowitz crisis

Financial Times, May 15, 2007 -- The Group of Seven leading industrialised nations on Tuesday failed to agree a way to resolve the crisis at the World Bank, as European nations and Canada resisted US pressure to delay consideration of whether Paul Wolfowitz can be effective in his job as bank president.
See comments for full story

GAP Posts Letter From Riza Whistleblower

In the open letter, the Bank staffer who originally disclosed the Shaha Riza payroll records urges the Bank to adopt real whistleblower protection policies, and a new, transparent process for determining the next president.

ABC News, World Bank President Losing White House Backing

Wolfowitz Out?, White House Opens Door for Wolfowitz Ouster

World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz is fighting for his job amid a conflict of interest controversy that centers around his personal relationship with his girlfriend -- a longtime World Bank employee.

A senior White House official tells ABC News that "all options are on the table" regarding Paul Wolfowitz's future and that "it is an open question" whether he should should remain as president of the World Bank.

"If you don't have board support and you don't have staff support, it is hard to get anything done," the official told ABC News.

"There are really two questions," the official said. The first question is Wolfowitz's handing of his girlfriend Shaha Riza's pay raise. The second is whether he should remain president of the World Bank.

See comments for full story

News Round Up, May 15, 2007

New York Times- Bank's Report Says Wolfowitz Violated Ethics
WSJ- Report Elevates Wolfowitz Fight --- Bank Board's Panel Cites A 'Crisis of Leadership'
Washington Post - Bank Rebukes Wolfowitz On Ethics; Rules Were Broken, Committee Says
LA Times- Wolfowitz faulted for `damage done' to the Bank
FT- Report concludes Wolfowitz broke rules at World Bank

Monday, May 14, 2007

Country Directors' Letter to Wolfowitz and Board

"The Bank must practice what it preaches on governance and accountability for us to be credible in our partner countries"

See comments for entire text of letter and list of signatories

Report Issued from Ad Hoc Group - Coll was told he "could not talk to anyone"

Reuters World Bank Panel Finds Wolfowitz Broke Rules
AP Wolfowitz Broke Rules
FT Wolfowitz Broke Bank Rules

Washington, D.C., May 14, 2007 - The World Bank Board of Executive Directors received the second report of the ad hoc group on Monday afternoon. In the interests of transparency they published the report and all associated documentation. They will meet with Mr. Wolfowitz at 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday as part of their deliberations on the report.

The report finds Wolfowitz guilty of engaging in an actual conflict of interest, and violating the Bank's Code of Conduct and numerous staff rules.

General Counsel Excluded - Coll silenced

"From the time Ms. Riza presented her terms to Mr. Coll (head of human resources) until Mr. Wolfowitz instructed Mr. Coll to accept those terms, neither Mr. Wolfowitz nor Mr. Coll consulted with Bank counsel concerning whether the terms were in the Bank's interest. Mr. Coll states that during his August 10 meeting with Mr. Wolfowitz and Ms (Robin) Cleveland, they told him he "could not talk to anyone" including the General Counsel about his conversation with Ms. Riza. Mr. Wolfowitz has not denied that the General Counsel was excluded from the negotiations. However, he explains that he did not consult with the General Counsel because he considered the General Counsel to be conflicted from providing advice to both the Ethics Committee and management." (Note 47, page 21 )

No Evidence Wolfowitz disagreed with Ethics Committee advice

"Mr. Wolfowitz states that he had disquiet with his understanding of the advice (of the Ethics Committee) but that he nevertheless followed it. The Ethics Procedures make clear that Mr. Wolfowitz could have taken the matter up with the Executive Directors directly if he did not believe the advice he had been given was correct. He (Wolfowitz) has repeatedly claimed that he protested vehemently to the Ethics Committee that he did not wish to be involved, but the Ad Hoc Group did not find any convincing documentary evidence of such a protest. " (Note 84, page 31)

In its recommendations the ad hoc group asks the Board to consider

1. Whether Mr. Wolfowitz will be able to provide the leadership needed to ensure that the Bank continues to operate to the fullest extent possible in achieving its mandate.
2. To undertake a review of the governance framework of the World Bank Group with the aim of ensuring that it is capable of effectively dealing with the challenges raised for the institution. (page 52)

White House in Last Ditch Effort to Save Wolfowitz

Reuters confirms allegations of stalling tactics

The White House this morning launched an extraordinary last minute effort to save Paul Wolfowitz by attempting to prevent the distribution of the long-awaited report of the Ad Hoc Committee.

The report is expected to contain overwhelming evidence, in the form of testimony and notes from Xavier Coll, the Bank's head of human resources, that Wolfowitz deliberately and knowingly broke Bank rules.

Eli Whitney Debevoise, the U.S. Executive Director, asked Monday morning that the report not be circulated to Board members this morning as planned, in order that President George Bush might reach G7 Finance Ministers by telephone to discuss the matter.

Bush was rebuffed in his requests for a teleconference and instead had White House staff call members of the Bank's Executive Board in a desperate attempt to secure their support for Wolfowitz, prior to their seeing the full report and Coll evidence.

The report was finally transmitted to Board members at 1pm today. The board is understood to be meeting later Monday evening. A number of Board chairs are said to be pressing for full disclosure of the report later tonight.

Meanwhile, Wolfowitz's lawyer, Robert Bennett, will be providing journalists with copies of Wolfowitz's response this afternoon. Wolfowitz is due to address the board Tuesday afternoon. The release of his testimony ahead of time ensures that his arguments will dominate Tuesday's news cycle as the Ad Hoc Committee's report, with Coll's testimony and notes, is not available.

G7 Finance Ministers are due to meet in Potsdam, Germany on May 18-19, 2007. U.S. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson is understood not to be attending.

News Round Up, May 14, 2007

The New York Times, Bank Files May Undercut Wolfowitz, Critics Say
The Wall Street Journal, Mission Statement: At World Bank, Wolfowitz fight clouds broader issue of direction --- Organization ponders how to best integrate aid efforts, anticorruption drive The Washington Post, Endgame at the World Bank, By Sebastian Mallaby
Reuters, Shoe on the other foot as Africa chides Wolfowitz
Financial Times, Decisive week for World Bank chief
The Washington Post, Al Kamen, Are They or Aren't They?
See comment for full WSJ article

Friday, May 11, 2007

Next week Wolfowitz packs bags for Slovenia, leaves irony at home....

World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz will be traveling to Europe next week where, among other things, he will present an award in Slovenia for an essay competition on anti-corruption. We assume this means he is leaving his fine sense of irony at home.

The Annual Bank Conference on Development Economics (ABCDE) 2007 will take place in Bled, Slovenia, on May 17-18, 2007. The conference will be co-organized by the World Bank and the Government of Slovenia.

For more information about Mr. Wolfowitz's itinerary and scheduled appearances in Europe please contact: Washington, Ms. Merrell Tuck-Primdahl, Mtuckprimdahl@worldbank.org Tel 202-473-9516 or Paris, Ms. Rachel Winter Jones, rjones1@worldbank.org Tel +33-1-4069-3052

News Round Up, May 11, 2007

The New York Times, Europeans Push U.S. to Force Wolfowitz From World Bank
Time Magazine
, The World Bank's Real Problem. It's not just the Wolfowitz mess.
The Los Angeles Times, Wolfowitz seen as a world apart at bank
The Washington Post, The Real World Bank Problem, by George F. Will
See comment for full stories

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Wolfowitz offered numerous opportunities to make case

World Bank Executive Directors demonstrate extent of due process, issue update, chronology

Washington DC, May 10, 2007 - The statement below was issued late yesterday by the World Bank Board of Executive Directors.

The statement provides an update on the investigation into wrong doing by World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz. The lengthy and extensive due diligence demonstrated by the Board are detailed in the chronology. Likewise the numerous opportunities afforded Mr. Wolfowitz to respond and explain his actions are outlined below.

Mr. Wolfowitz has been offered another opportunity to present to the Board on Tuesday May, 15.

Link to Statement from the Executive Directors

Avaaz Petition Delivered - 50,000 Signatures

Members of Avaaz.org , a global civic advocacy group, yesterday delivered a 50,000-person international petition to the World Bank calling for Mr. Wolfowitz to be fired.

Avaaz believes that Mr. Wolfowitz's actions in office have undermined the Bank's ability to help the one billion people living in extreme poverty around the world, and that he will continue to hinder progress until he is no longer in office.

Watch video with protest footage and statement by Avaaz head Ben Wikler here .

News Round Up May 10, 2007

Wall Street Journal Rice Launches Wolfowitz Defense, Quiet Effort May Reflect Deepening U.S. Concern Over European Relations

New York Times Some Leeway for Wolfowitz, Who Gets a Good Word From Rice

Financial Times Editorial World Bank crisis becomes perilous

Washington Post Europeans Wince, Wait For Wolfowitz Saga to End

Washington Post In the Shadow of a Scandal Shaha Riza Remains the Mystery Woman From the World Bank

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

World Bank Staff Association Update on "TCS" - The Current Situation

Staff Association Update
May 9, 2007

TCS Update
As many staff are aware, there will be a rally today at 1:00 across from the MC Building sponsored by MoveOn and Avaaz. Avaaz intends to deliver a petition with 50,000 signatures calling on the Board to remove Mr. Wolfowitz as World Bank Group President.

More in comments

News Round Up May 9, 2007

Washington Post - Wolfowitz Criticizes Handling Of Probe; World Bank Chief Accuses Panel of Leaks, Unfair Haste
New York Times - Treasury Chief Supports Delay for Wolfowitz
Wall Street Journal - World Bank Board May Take Action on Wolfowitz This Week
Financial Times - Paulson backs calls for due process

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Worldbankpresident.org Blogger Wins Satire of The Week Award

Wolfowitz's Girlfriend Resigns as his Girlfriend
Special to Newsweek
By Andy Borowitz

May 8, 2007 - In yet another setback for the embattled World Bank president, Paul Wolfowitz’s girlfriend, Shaha Riza, announced today that she was resigning as Wolfowitz’s girlfriend, "effective immediately."

Full story in comments

Fire Wolfowitz Rally Outside Bank, 1pm Tomorrow

Avaaz.org To Deliver Fire Wolfowitz Petition to Bank Board - Wednesday May 9, 2007 at 1:00pm

Avaaz.org will deliver a 50,000-person global petition to the World Bank Board of Executive Directors tomorrow, at 1pm. Members of Avaaz, a global online advocacy group with members in every country, will rally outside the Bank building, sporting flags from dozens of countries and a banner with "World to Bank - Fire Wolfowitz" written over thousands of signers' names and countries. They will join World Bank Staff in delivering their petition to the Bank's Board as its members deliberate on Wolfowitz's fate.

In April, Avaaz released popular YouTube video The Bank.
The Bank
has been viewed more than 113,000 times.

News Round Up, May 8, 2007

New York Times – Deal Is Offered for Chief's Exit at World Bank
Financial Times - Wolfowitz top aide in fresh controversy
Wall Street Journal - Wolfowitz's Fate Grows Dimmer --- Panel Finds Chief Ran Afoul of Ethics Rules; Senior Adviser Will Leave
Washington Post - Scandal May Jeopardize World Bank Funds

Monday, May 7, 2007

Kevin Kellems resigns from World Bank

Reuters News
7 May 2007

WASHINGTON, May 7 (Reuters) - One of two key aides to World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz resigned on Monday, saying he could no longer effectively help advance the mission of the institution under the current leadership crisis.

Kevin Kellems, who was an advisor to Wolfowitz since 2002 at the Pentagon and throughout the planning of the Iraq war, told Reuters he was leaving "for other opportunities".

"Given the current environment surrounding the leadership of the World Bank Group, it is very difficult to be effective in helping to advance the mission of the institution," Kellems said.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Governance & Anticorruption Team Letter - 764 signatures

The Governance and Anti Corruption Team has updated the signatures to its message of April 26 to Wolfowitz and the Board of Executive Directors. The update includes all signatures received by noon, Thursday, May 3rd. There are now a total of 764 signatories to the letter, including the original 46. Please visit the Governance and AntiCorruption Website for a full list of names and more information.

Wrap up of the Wolfowitz Leadership Scandal

Many observers have noted that the sheer volume of information circulating in the Wolfowitz leadership scandal threatens to cloud some of the key issues. Mr. Wolfowitz's statement of April 30 2007 has added unsubstantiated assertions as facts. See 'Comments' for a summary of the critical facts in the case.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

The Economist

Wolfowitz agonistes - World Bank, 5 May 2007

The World Bank's president will not go quietly.....this week, as he gave his testimony at a hearing held by the bank's directors, it was once again easy to see him as the man who defied world opinion in plotting the Iraq war. He believes he is the victim of a "smear campaign" designed "to create a self-fulfilling prophecy that I am an ineffective leader."

See comments for full story

Wolfowitz Response to Melkert and Danino

Read Paul Wolfowitz's 10 page response to the testimony of Ad Melkert and Roberto Danino. Letter dated May 2, 2007. Available online at the Washington Post

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Five Former Bank Governors Speak Out

"At stake is the Bank’s ability to carry out its mission"

Letter to Financial Times from former World Bank Governors
May 2 2007

"Mr Wolfowitz has compromised the trust in the integrity of his leadership and the credibility of the bank’s promotion of transparency and accountability in public affairs. In the interest of multilateral co-operation for the alleviation of poverty, Mr Wolfowitz should resign."

Domingo CAVALLO, Former Minister of Finance, Argentina
Rubens RICUPERO, Former Minister of Finance, Brazil
Eduardo ANINAT, Former Minister of Finance, Chile
Rodrigo BOTERO, Former Minister of Finance, Colombia
Pedro ASPE, Former Minister of Finance, Mexico

Click here for full letter

Monday, April 30, 2007

Wolfowitz decries "smear campaign" against him and vows he will not resign

Reuters - Wolfowitz says won't resign

Lesley Wroughton
Mon April 30 2007

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz lashed back at critics on Monday who he alleged were conducting a "smear campaign" against him and vowed he would not resign over what he termed unfair charges.

In a statement to an investigating bank panel looking into whether he broke ethical and other rules in a pay-and-promotion deal he directed for his girlfriend, Wolfowitz said the treatment of the issue has become "circus like."

Click here for Wolfowitz's statement to the Ad Hoc Committee

Click here for Bennett's submission to the Ad Hoc Committee on behalf of Wolfowitz

Click here for full story

Saturday, April 28, 2007

A Message to Wolfowitz and the Board of Executive Directors from members of the World Bank Group’s Governance & Anticorruption Team

...We are deeply concerned by the impact of the current leadership crisis on the Bank’s credibility and authority to engage with governments, non-government stakeholders, and donor partners on the GAC agenda. As is known, there are reports from the field offices of concrete cases where the Bank’s policy dialogue and operational work on governance and anticorruption are being undermined. The credibility of our front line staff is eroding in the face of legitimate questions from our clients about the Bank’s ability to “practice what it preaches” on governance. In these circumstances, we cannot credibly implement the GAC strategy...

See comments for full message from Governance and Anticorruption Team

For more information please contact
Dan Kaufmann dkaufmann@worldbank.org tel: 202-458-9187, or
Sanjay Pradhan spradhan@worldbank.org tel: 202-458-9187, or
Sumir Lal slal@worldbank.org tel: 202-458-7635, or
Carolyn Reynolds Creynolds@worldbank.org tel: 202-473-0049.

See comments for Team Members

Friday, April 27, 2007

Orders to Play Down ‘Climate Change’ Came From Wolfowitz’ Office

The following was posted on The Government Accountability Project (GAP) website today www.whistleblower.org.

April 27, 2007

Washington, D.C. – The Government Accountability Project (GAP) has acquired an internal World Bank document that summarizes a February 2006 meeting of World Bank officials regarding climate change and clean energy. The document indicates that orders to tone down references to "climate change" in an environmental strategy paper originated in the office of Bank president Paul Wolfowitz.

For more information please contact: Bea Edwards, GAP International Director, beae@whistleblower.org, tel.: 202-408-0034 ext 155 or Dylan Blaylock, GAP Communications Director, dylanb@whistleblower.org, tel.: 202-408-0034 ext 137, 202-236-3733 (cell)

See Comments for full story

Letter from Paul Wolfowitz to Herman Wijffels, Netherlands Executive Director and chairman of Ad Hoc Committee

April 25 2007

Dear Herman

I have had a chance to reflect overnight on your request of yesterday evening that I appear before the ad hoc committee this morning. I am deeply troubled and feel that I am being treated shabbily and unfairly without regard to appropriate process...

It is important not only for me but for the institution, that this matter not be resolved by a rush to judgment. That would only compound the damage to all concerned...

Whatever the outcome of the present matter, the manner in which it is resolved will be part of the reputation of the World Bank Group far into the future...

See comments for full letter from Paul Wolfowitz

Shaha Never Seconded to State Department

All documents available online at: Disclosed Documents in Riza Case

Washington D.C. April 26, -- Shaha Riza was never seconded to the State Department, according to a letter from the State Department to the head of the World Bank's Human Resources department dated October 5, 2005.

For more information, contact Bea Edwards, International Director of the Government Accountability Project (GAP) beae@whistlblower.org; tel.: 202-408-0034 ext 155, or visit: www.whistleblower.org .

See comments for full story

All documents available online: Disclosed Documents in Riza Case

News Round Up, May 4, 2007

The New York Times Wolfowitz Rebuts Critics Over Tempest at World Bank
The Financial Times Wolfowitz in last-ditch change of tack
Foreign Policy Top Secret! [Mock] Memo From Paul Wolfowitz to Bank Staff By Ken Rogoff
The Washington Post Wolfowitz Blames the Bank
The Wall Street Journal Leader Cites Ambiguity (see comments for full story)
The Wall Street Journal, Gagging Shaha Riza (see comments for full story)

News Round Up, May 3, 2007

New York Times - Committee Is Likely to Say Wolfowitz Broke Rules
Financial Times - World Bank rejects 'rush to judgment'
New York Times - Wolfowitz's Big Mistake by David Brooks (see comment for full story)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

EU Parliament Demands US Secure Resignation Of World Bank President

Dow Jones International News

STRASBOURG, France (AP)--The European Parliament Wednesday demanded the U.S. president and government secure the resignation of World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz, whose position has been jeopardized by revelations that he helped his girlfriend get a high-paying job.

The European Union assembly said it wanted the U.S. to "signal to...Wolfowitz that his withdrawal would be a welcome step towards preventing the bank's anti-corruption policy from being undermined."

Click here for more

United States seeks to roll back reproductive health

Washington D.C., April 25 -- At a board meeting Tuesday to discuss the "The World Bank Strategy for Health, Nutrition and Population Results", the U.S. tried, single-handedly, to roll back internationally agreed language dating from the Cairo Population Conference of 1994, which is endorsed by the World Bank.

The language in the Cairo Conference's "Program of Action" was adopted in 1994 by 179 countries, including the United States.

Yesterday, the U.S. Executive Director, Eli Whitney Debevoise II, objected to the internationally agreed language of Cairo, specifically the words "reproductive health services" and "reproductive rights". The United States tried to introduce new language on "age appropriate" provision of services, which would curtail provision of services to adolescents.

See comments for full story and the statement of the World Bank Executive Directors

News Round Up, May 1, 2007

"Wolfowitz Loses Ground" - New York Times

New York Times - Wolfowitz Goes on the Attack, but Hints at a Deal
Wall Street Journal - Wolfowitz Weighs Quitting if Name Cleared
Financial Times - Wolfowitz lashes out at 'smear campaign'
Washington Post - Wolfowitz Says He Is Target of 'Smear' Tactics

Wolfowitz's Employment Contract

See here for a copy of Paul Wolfowitz's employment contract with the World Bank, which lays out his remuneration and also elaborates on the importance of adhering to the Bank's Code of Conduct.

Para 10 says this document, dated June 2, 2005, should be disclosed publicly. We thought we'd help that process along.

Please note paragraph 3 on Code of Conduct "You will be expected to observe the standards of ethical conduct applicable to staff members of the Bank, where these reflect a stricter standard.

Also note paragraph 7 on End of service "Although you have been appointed for a term of five years, the Executive Directors may terminate your contract with the Bank in accordance with Article V, Section 5(a) of the Articles of Agreement. It is expected that should you desire to resign, you will give the Bank reasonable advance notice of your desire to do so."

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

News Round Up, April 30, 2007

New York Times, April 30 Resignation Could Be Part of World Bank Compromise

Wall Street Journal, April 30 Wolfowitz Plans 'Substantial' Defense

Financial Times, April 30 Wolfowitz to face Panel of Bank Directors

New York Times, April 29 Document Dispute at Center of Wolfowitz Case

Document dispute at center of Wolfowitz case

New York Times
April 29 2007

WASHINGTON, April 28 — Arriving as president of the World Bank in the summer of 2005, Paul D. Wolfowitz told colleagues that he was eager to tackle poverty in Africa and corruption in aid. But almost immediately he became consumed by frustrating negotiations with bank officials over the status of his companion, an employee at the bank, documents released this month show...

Some time in the coming week, the 24-member board may ask for Mr. Wolfowitz’s resignation, declare a loss of confidence in his leadership or do nothing in the hope that negotiations with the Bush administration can bring about a voluntary resignation. Few doubt the board’s determination to push him out.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Volcker Panel Finally Begins Work

Volcker Panel Update on April 23 2007

The Volcker Panel was established in February this year in response to a call from the World Bank's Board in August 2006 about the manner in which the Department of Institutional Integrity was conducting its investigations.

The Department of Institutional Integrity is headed by Ms. Suzane Rich Folsom. Email: sfolsom@worldbank.org telephone: 202-473-1700. See Terms of Reference below for the Volcker Panel and memo from Paul Wolfowitz to staff in February.

Mr. Volcker has been less than zealous in moving forward with his independent review and his independent panel members all appear to work for Ms. Palacio, the Bank's Chief Counsel.

To date we understand that no staff involved in the cases that caused the Board concern (India, Cambodia, Kenya, or Democratic Republic of Congo) have been interviewed by Mr. Volker's panel.

The Staff Association has apparently been asking to meet with Mr. Volker and his panel since the panel was formed.

We welcome Mr. Volker's update on his activities, although we find the timing curious.

- MEMO -

From: Chairman Paul Volcker
Volcker Panel Update
Date: April 23, 2007 - 15:40
Sponsor: Legal Department

I would like to update you on the work of the recently appointed independent Panel of experts that I am leading to review INT's roles, responsibilities and working relationships as part of the Bank's Governance and Anti-Corruption Strategy.

The composition of the Panel has now been finalized and we are commencing our work. Under our Terms of Reference, we will "review and evaluate the mandate and authorities, the policies, procedures, practices, independence, reporting lines, and oversight mechanisms related to INT."

In addition to myself, the Panel members include:

Mr. Gustavo Gaviria, (Email: ggaviria@worldbank.org, tel: 202-458-0092, currently listed in the World Bank directory as working for Ana Palacio); Mr. John Githongo, (Email: jgithongo@worldbank.org, currently listed in the World Bank directory as working for Ana Palacio); Ben W. Heineman; Mr. Walter Van Gerven, (currently listed in the World Bank directory as working for Ana Palacio); Sir John Vereker...

See comments for more

News Round Up, April 26, 2007

Battle Escalates: "Letting him stay is not an option'' - New York Times

New York Times-Wolfowitz Escalates Battle to Stay at Bank

Paul D. Wolfowitz accused the bank's board on Wednesday of treating him ''shabbily and unfairly,'' and appealed for more time to defend himself against allegations of favoritism and other matters.

But the board was described as puzzled and put off by Mr. Wolfowitz's decision, disclosed this week, to bring in Mr. Bennett, who is known as a litigator but also as someone who can make a deal in situations that seem beyond compromise.
A top European official involved in setting bank policy said there could be a deal avoiding a censure of Mr. Wolfowitz but that it had to involve Mr. Wolfowitz leaving the bank.

''There are a lot of people at the bank asking, 'What is Wolfowitz thinking?' '' the official said. ''It just looks like Wolfowitz is ramping up the pressure. I think the bank directors are looking for a deal to avoid a confrontation. But he's got to go as part of it. Letting him stay is not an option.''

Financial Times-Wolfowitz's late bid to regain initiative

Most non-US directors will probably regard any finding that Mr Wolfowitz's handling of the Riza secondment broke bank codes of conduct or ethics as sufficient to establish that his credibility is damaged beyond repair. They will also insist that the ultimate judgment about whether Mr Wolfowitz should stay or go be grounded on the broader question of whether he has the moral authority and support he needs to be effective.

Le Monde, France - Les Européens hésitent à demander le départ de Paul Wolfowitz

L'entêtement du président de la Banque mondiale irrite à Bruxelles et dans les capitales européennes, où l'on ne veut pas donner le sentiment d'attaquer l'administration américaine.

Son entêtement embarrasse les gouvernements européens, qui hésitent à exiger son départ. Après Londres et Berlin, le gouvernement français a rappelé que l'institution devait exercer ses missions dans des conditions " irréprochables d'un point de vue éthique "… Louis Michel, le commissaire européen chargé du développement, s'inquiète des conséquences de cette crise sur l'activité de la Banque mondiale. "

Cette affaire révèle surtout l'intensité de la bataille interne entre M. Wolfowitz et le personnel : si elle se prolonge ou si elle ne débouche pas sur une clarification, cela va handicaper l'institution ", dit-on dans l'entourage de M. Michel.

Spiegel, Germany - Wolfowitz-Affäre - Weltbank wollte Klimawandel totschweigen

Neue Vorwürfe gegen Weltbank-Chef Wolfowitz: Einer seiner Vertrauten soll massiv in die Arbeit eines Wissenschaftlers eingegriffen haben. Im Umweltbericht der Weltbank sollten die Folgen des Klimawandels heruntergespielt werden.

Washington - Die Vorwürfe richten sich gegen einen der beiden Stellvertreter Paul Wolfowitz', Juan José Daboub. Er soll versucht haben, in einem der wichtigsten Umweltberichte der Weltbank die Aussagen über den Klimawandel zu verwässern. Das sagte der oberste Wissenschaftler der Weltbank, Robert Watson, der "Financial Times".

Daboub, früher konservativer Finanzminister von El Salvador, ist von Wolfowitz zur Weltbank geholt worden. Er steht bereits in der Kritik, weil er in die Strategie der Bank zur Familienplanung in Madagaskar eingegriffen haben soll.

Ekstrabladet, Denmark - Danish dollars to corruption

Denmark is involved in the sex and corruption scandal which is developing around World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz. 12 millions of Danish taxpayers money ($2 million) are stranded in an international foundation with the ambitious name 'Foundation for the future' which has as its commendable aim to 'support independent CSO and democracy projects' in the Middle East and North Africa. In reality, we are talking about a ghost office, which hasn't paid out a dime since the start up in 2005, has no telephone, no official address, and has only organized 4 meetings. The foundation is run by Paul Wolfowitz' girlfriend, Tunisian born Shaha Riza, who's also the only employee in the office.

Consequences if he stays

What the Board of Governors said about Wolfowitz:

"We have to ensure that the Bank can effectively carry out its mandate and maintain its credibility and reputation as well as the motivation of its staff. The current situation is of great concern to all of us. We endorse the Board's actions in looking into this matter and we asked it to complete its work. We expect the Bank to adhere to a high standard of internal governance."

The following points summarize some of the most costly consequences if Wolfowitz is not forced to resign:

· Deterioration in Reputation... The tarnished reputation of the institution will not be restored without the closure that Wolfowitz's departure would bring. The brand of the World Bank has already been damaged under Wolfowitz's management style and his repeated difficulties with the Board and his managers. The Bank will find itself in a position where it has greater difficulty in attracting the high-quality staff needed to carry out the Bank's operations. It is highly likely that if Wolfowitz were to be retained, many long-serving Bank staff would leave the organization given the high levels of distrust and moral outrage at his behavior and leadership style.
· Loss of Credibility on Governance and Anti-Corruption...
· Breach of Staff's Trust...
· Diminished Ethical Standards of Top Management...
· Lost Confidence of Board of Directors...
· Department of Integrity...
· Double Standard of Ethics...
· Relationship with Development Partners...
· IDA 15 Replenishment...

Former senior staff call for Wolfowitz to Resign

Financial Times
World Bank letter Signators
April 22 2007

Gautam Kaji, former Managing Director
Peter Woicke, former Managing Director and EVP
Shengman Zhang, former Managing Director
Roberto Danino, former senior VP and general counsel
Gary Perlin, former Senior VP and CFO
Jean-Louis Sarbib, former senior VP
Shahid Javed Burki, former VP
Cesare Calari, former VP
David de Ferranti, former VP
Ian Goldin, former VP
Ian Johnson, former VP
Geoffrey Lamb, former VP
Johannes Linn, former VP
Callisto Madavo, former VP
Gobind Nankani, former VP
Christiaan Poortman, former VP
Jean-François Rischard, former VP
Jo Ritzen, former VP
Richard Stern, former VP
John Wilton, former VP
Michael Barth, former Director
Amar Bhattacharya, former Senior Adviser
Gerard Caprio, former Director
Michael Carter, former Director
Dennis de Tray, former Director
Paula Donovan, former Director
Marisa Fernandez-Palacios, former Director
Charles Griffin, former Director
Jean-Philippe Halphen, former Director
Ann Hamilton, former Director
Paul Isenman, former Director
Homi Kharas, former Regional chief economist
Harinder Kohli, former Director
Olivier Lafourcade, former Director
Philippe Liétard, former Director
Serge Michailof, former Direector
Bernard Pasquier, former Director
Manuel Penalver Quesada, former Director
Enrique Rueda-Sabater, former Director
Alexander Shakow, former Director
Karl Voltaire, former Director

See Comments for full text of letter

News Round Up April 25: "biggest crisis in Bank history'', more on Daboub, family planning, and climate change

New York Times
Frustrations With Wolfowitz Boil Over at Meeting

At a meeting between Paul D. Wolfowitz and his top managers at the World Bank last week, Mr. Wolfowitz made an unusual confession. ''I understand that I've lost a lot of trust, and I want to build that trust back up,'' he said, according to people present.

But the beleaguered bank president was immediately confronted by one of his top deputies, who asserted that Mr. Wolfowitz was wrong to think that the furor over his leadership sprang only from his handling of the pay and promotion for his companion or from unease over his support of the Iraq war while at the Pentagon.

Graeme Wheeler, the bank's managing director, said at the meeting that the fight over whether Mr. Wolfowitz should stay on at the bank amounted to the ''the biggest crisis in its history.''

Financial Times
Deputy's woes stir World Bank turmoil

One of Paul Wolfowitz's two handpicked deputies, Juan José Daboub, tried to water down references to climate change in one of the World Bank's main environmental strategy papers, the bank's chief scientist has told the Financial Times.

Mr Daboub, a conservative former finance minister from El Salvador, was brought into the bank by Mr Wolfo-witz. He is already under fire for allegedly trying to take out references to family planning in the bank's Madagascar country assistance strategy and reduce its prominence in its new health sector strategy.

Wall Street Journal
Wolfowitz Tensions Affect World Bank Operations - Europeans Fight U.S.-Backed Move On Family Planning

Several European members of the World Bank revolted against a U.S.-backed proposal on the bank's family-planning policy, in a meeting yesterday that illuminated how tensions over embattled President Paul Wolfowitz and his appointees are spilling into the institution's functioning.

The family-planning issue has become a lightning rod amid increasing criticism inside and outside the bank over Mr. Wolfowitz's tenure.

The Washington Post
Wolfowitz's Well-Traveled Travails

It seems Wolfowitz's priority is to put the brakes on the uproar -- something known at the bank as "The Current Situation," or TCS for short. In a bank-wide e-mail yesterday, Wolfowitz urged everyone to avoid a rush to judgment in "the current situation" and asked "for your continued patience . . . while we wait for the Board's decision."

"Yesterday," he wrote, "I briefly met with VPs and Actings to update them on the current situation and how to move forward. . . . The Vice Presidents have been very candid with their feedback to me on the challenges facing the Bank and I appreciate this." You betcha.

NPR - Wolfowitz Case Offers Test of Multilateralism

All Things Considered, April 23, 2007
by Tom Gjelten

World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz faces unprecedented pressure to resign his position. What's at stake here, analysts say, is the Bush administration's commitment to multilateralism. Critics say it's time for the World Bank's leader-selection process to be opened up, so that non-U.S. citizens could be considered for the post.

Click here to listen

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Scandal threatens World Bank's role

Financial Times

Krishna Guha and Eoin Callan in Washington
April 23 2007

The independent agency charged with assessing the effectiveness of the World Bank has issued a searing indictment of Paul Wolfo-witz's leadership, warning that the situation at the bank risks causing "irreparable harm to worldwide efforts in poverty reduction and sustainable development".

In a formal statement seen by the Financial Times, which the bank's board will consider this week, the Independent Evaluation Group called for "swift changesin management and aconcerted effort to restore credibility".

Click here for full story

See Comments for IEG Statement

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Wheeler calls for Wolfowitz to step down, White House says Board should focus on long term effectiveness of institution


A deputy to Paul Wolfowitz urged the World Bank chief on Wednesday to resign in the interests of the institution during a meeting of the bank's management, sources who participated in the meeting said. The sources told Reuters that World Bank Managing Director Graeme Wheeler, a bank veteran named by Wolfowitz as one of his two deputies a year ago, raised the issue at a meeting of the bank's vice presidents .

"I think the effort of the World Bank board should be to get to the facts, treat it with fairness and think of the long-term effectiveness of the institution," said White House spokesman Tony Fratto.

Wall Street Journal

"The risk for Mr. Wolfowitz is that the White House could decide that maintaining long-term U.S. credibility within the bank and more broadly in the international community is more important than defending Mr. Wolfowitz's personal integrity."

Financial Times

The danger that internal strife could cripple the bank will weigh heavily on its board - made up of representatives of shareholder governments - which meets again on Thursday.

New York Times

'The fact that Graeme would ask him to resign has been all over the bank today,'' one official said. ''He is an unassuming guy who is very well respected here."

Reports of Mr. Wolfowitz's plans to change his management style did not appear to placate the staff association, which has called on him to resign.

Inter Press Service

Some Bank staff appear to be behind a new website, www.wolfowitzresign.com , launched this week, to rally support for the call on the World Bank president to go.

What part of 'resign' don't you understand?

Heat on Wolfowitz as World Bank directors meet
Jitendra Joshi April 19 2007

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Embattled president Paul Wolfowitz looked more isolated than ever Thursday as directors met to debate his fate amid the rumblings of a civil war among senior staff...

..."It's not about management style. It's not about interaction with staff," the source said on condition of anonymity.

"There was an exasperation that was conveyed to Wolfowitz: what part of 'resign' don't you understand?"

Click Here for full story

Bank Executive Directors Widen Investigation

April 20, 2007—The Executive Directors met on April 19 to address the current situation in the Bank, which is of great concern. Based on the clear guidance of the Development Committee, the Executive Directors agreed on a process to deal with the situation urgently, effectively, and in an orderly manner.

Having reviewed the April 11 report of the Executive Directors’ ad hoc group and the associated documents, the Executive Directors discussed questions related to conflicts of interest and possible violations of Staff Rules. They identified a number of issues requiring further consideration.

See Comments for Full Communication

European NGOs back resignation

40 European civil society groups backed calls for Wolfowitz's resignation in an open letter to European development and finance ministers today.
19 April 2007

Dear Ministers,

European civil society backs Wolfowitz resignation calls and urges comprehensive reform of World Bank governance...

See comments for full list and full story


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Blue Ribbon - Testimonial for Good Governance

World Bank Staff Association Broadcast Message
April 19 2007 - 5:24 pm

Dear Colleagues,

The Staff Association has been distributing blue ribbons as a symbol for our continuing struggle for improved governance in the World Bank Group. More will be available on Friday afternoon. You may collect them from the following places: Main entrances -- MC, J, H, I and IFC buildings. Staff who are in satellite buildings may pick one up at these entrances or in the SA Office, Room. MC-1-700.

Let us continue to wear them until a satisfactory solution is found to this crisis.


Alison Cave
World Bank Group Staff Association

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Shaha, Paul and Iraq - Tell What You Know

New York Times, Apr 17 2007
Unusual Trip to Iraq in ‘03 for Wolfowitz Companion

While he was Deputy Secretary of Defense, Wolfowitz ordered a private contractor, SAIC, to hire Shaha Riza to go to Iraq from April 25 to May 31, 2003. On her return, Shaha briefed the board about what she had seen in Baghdad, which raised concerns among some bank staff and board members about the capacity in which she had traveled to Iraq. At the time it was against bank policy for its officials to go there. It was not clear why the Pentagon specifically asked for Shaha to travel to Iraq. It is against staff rules for an employee to be paid by an external company like SAIC while on Bank payroll. Shaha’s lawyer, Victoria Toensing, says Shaha went as a volunteer and took a leave of absence from the World Bank, paying for her own benefits while she was on leave. Who has more on this? Where is the human resources paperwork?

Williams & Connolly and Ana Palacio – Tell What You Know

Apr 16 2007
What do Ana Palacio, Robert Barnett, and Jonathan Kravis all have in common?

Washington, D.C., April 16 - The answer to the question is that they all work for Paul Wolfowitz. Ana Palacio is the Bank's Chief General Counsel. On April 9 she announced to staff that she was hiring law firm Williams & Connolly LLP to investigate the leak of Bank documents to Fox News. The attorney on the case is Jonathan Kravis.

On April 12 staff learned that Robert Barnett, a lawyer at Williams & Connolly LLP, is Paul Wolfowitz's personal lawyer. Staff learned this as they waded through over 100 pages of documents outlining Wolfowitz's role in a sleaze and corruption scandal that has rocked the Bank. World Bank staff are said to be baffled that Palacio is not aware that there is more than one law firm in Washington. Could this be a conflict of interest? The following process should have been required of Williams & Connolly. Was it? Who has more on this? Is Kravis supervised by Barnett?

Ana Palacio, World Bank General Counsel - Tell What You Know

Inter Press Service News Agency - Apr 13 2007
Top Wolfowitz Postings Went to Iraq War Backers

Ana is alleged to have acted improperly when she worked for the Bank as a consultant while still being a member of the Spanish government. The Ethics Officer who brought Ana’s attention to the conflict has been forced out of the Bank. Ana is also accused of causing a conflict of interest by taking control of the Office of Ethics and Business Conduct and the Mediation Office. The conflict lies in the fact that in a dispute the General Counsel represents the interests of the Bank, while the Office of Ethics and Business Conduct, and the Mediation Office, represent staff. There are also allegations around the process by which Ana was hired See Irregular Recruitments and she is in the headlines as hers was one of the three Jobs for the Coalition of the Willing. Who has more on Ana? It’s time to speak up.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Call to Safeguard Reproductive Health at the World Bank and Secure Wolfowitz's Resignation

A key figure in the World Bank, said to have links to the Roman Catholic sect Opus Dei, was accused on April 15 of undermining its commitment to the health of women by ordering the deletion of goals, targets and policies relating to family planning.

Juan Jose Daboub, the bank's managing director, ordered staff to remove all references to family planning from its country assistance programme document for Madagascar. Mr Daboub is the former finance minister of El Salvador and a member of the Arena party, which has close ties to the Catholic church.

The Government Accountability Project has the documents in the health scandal at the World Bank. See the UK's Guardian on April 16 Leak Prompts Fear Over World Bank Health Policies. The key person at GAP is Bea Edwards beatricee@whistleblower.org Tel: 202-408-0034 ext 155

Write letters to the World Bank's Executive Directors, which they can show to their authorities in their capitals as evidence of overwhelming lack of confidence on the part of civil society in Wolfowitz's ability to lead the Bank. Ask NGO's, parliamentarians, and elected officials to write to the ED's also.

The names, phone numbers and email addresses of the World Bank ED's are here: http://www.bicusa.org/en/Article.92.aspx

Language to use:
This is the language used in the statement by the Board of Governors of the World Bank (the Development Committee Communique) on Wolfowitz. It is unprecedented language and extremely strong. The key words that should be used in letters to the Executive Directors are in bold.

We have to ensure that the Bank can effectively carry out its mandate and maintain its credibility and reputation as well as the motivation of its staff. The current situation is of great concern to all of us. We endorse the Board's actions in looking into this matter and we asked it to complete its work. We expect the Bank to adhere to a high standard of internal governance.

Explanation of Terms:
Executive Directors - 24 chairs representing 180 countries, making up a permanently sitting board in D.C.. Executive Directors report to the Boards of Governors of World Bank and IMF.

The Governors are Minister level - Finance or Development Cooperation, and Central Bank Governors. They are elected officials sensitive to public perception in home countries. They should be written to also. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson is Governor for the United States.

Washington's $8 Billion Shadow - Vanity Fair, March 2007


Mega-contractors such as Halliburton and Bechtel supply the government with brawn. But the biggest, most powerful of the "body shops"—SAIC, which employs 44,000 people and took in $8 billion last year—sells brainpower, including a lot of the "expertise" behind the Iraq war.

by Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele March 2007