www.wolfowitzresign.com May 21, 2007

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

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

What do Ana Palacio, Robert Barnett, and Jonathan Kravis all have in common? More allegations of sleaze and corruption

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?

1. The partner representing the new client (The Board) would have to inform the other partners, disclosing the nature of any potential conflict of interest, and the partnership would decide whether to take on the new client in this matter. The requesting partner would then be required to disclose the pre-existing interest to the new client, and the counsel for the new client would have had to sign a waiver.
2. The firm would have documentation of this waiver
3. Presumably, the counsel would have informed her client (the Board) of the potential conflict.
4. The firm would/should have these records, for if the waiver were not documented the law firm itself would vulnerable to a major scandal.

Questions the World Bank Board might have

1. The client (Board) is entitled to request this documentation from Williams & Connolly.
2. The client would be entitled to know if the partner supervising Mr. Kravis (the Associate handling the Fox leak investigation) was Robert Barnett.

Robert Barnett can be reached at Williams & Connolly LLP, Tel: 202-434-5034, email: rbarnett@wc.com

Jonathon Kravis can be reached at Williams & Connolly LLP, Tel: 202-434-5206, email: jkravis@wc.com

High Noon - Wolfowitz Pack Your Bags!

Today, Wednesday, outside the World Bank.

Missed the opportunity to participate in last Saturday's action in front of the World Bank, calling for the dismissal of Iraq war architect Paul Wolfowitz? Feel up to another fun event, connecting US interests to the policies of the World Bank?

Then read on...

Code Pink, the 50 Years Is Enough Network and other local organizers will be doing an action in front of the World Bank tomorrow at noon. Organized at the last minute, this action will take advantage of Wolfowitz's current scandal to call for his resignation, greater transparency, and reparations for damage done.

What: Join us for guerrilla theater, singing, in front of the World Bank Building.
Theme: "Wolfowitz Pack Your Bags!" We will be rolling around suitcases. Enlarged bagage tags will hold slogans.
When: TODAY, April 18 @ noon.
Where: Gather at Murrow Park opposite the Bank's Main Complex (18th and H)

PS. If you have a suitcase, please roll it along to the action!
For questions, feel free to contact Ruth Castel-Branco at 202 IMF BANK (463 2265).

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sweetheart Deals Not Limited to Sweethearts

Financial Times, April 15, 2007 -- Two sources told the Financial Times that Xavier Coll, the bank's senior human resources officer, was not consulted over the terms and conditions offered to Robin Cleveland and Kevin Kellems, former Bush administration officials who Mr Wolfowitz brought with him to the bank.

Ms Cleveland and Mr Kellems were given salaries of about $250,000 (£126,000) net of tax – the same amount paid to the highest ranked career bank officials, who typically have 25 years of development experience

World Bank policy is that the president has the authority to make an appointment at any level, but it would be normal for the head of HR to be consulted over the terms of such appointments, two sources told the FT. It is understood that mid-ranking HR officials were consulted over the appointments.

The FT's revelations are potentially damaging because they suggest that irregular processes over appointments under Mr Wolfowitz were not limited to his personal involvement in the Riza affair.


Editorials call for Wolfowitz to resign, cite need for good governance at Bank

Washington D.C., April 15, 2007 -- The editorial pages of newspapers across the world today called for Wolfowitz to resign, adding pressure to the World Bank's Board of Governors as they meet in Washington this weekend.

Facing a rising tide of public outrage at the sleaze and corruption scandal engulfing the Bank's President, Governors must decide whether to call for his resignation or risk leaving the institution severely compromised with Wolfowitz at the helm. Editorial pages in the UK, Kenya, France, Pakistan, and Turkey carried calls for Wolfowitz to go.

The International Herald Tribune said: What might Wolfowitz himself say if he discovered that a government receiving World Bank loans was making similar sweet arrangements for the personal friends of its president?

Governors are being challenged by public opinion in their respective capitals to demonstrate that they are practicing good governance at the Bank, and promoting transparency and accountability in the Wolfowitz matter.

Wolfowitz appears unrepentant and unclear that he has done wrong. An email to all staff late Saturday was a step back from his position of Thursday when he apologized for his "mistake". On Saturday, he did not apologize for the damage done to the Bank or offer further explanation but said that "misleading information was circulating".

Staff are said to be angry at the lack of action by the Bank's board, saying that the damage to the Bank's ability to fulfill its mandate in developing countries is enormous.

Template Available - Staff Letter to Board

World Bank Staff sick of sleaze and corruption, begin letter campaign to Board

International Herald Tribune editorial calls for Wolfowitz resignation

The International Herald Tribune today joined the growing chorus calling for Wolfowitz to go when its editorial page asked:

"What might Wolfowitz himself say if he discovered that a government receiving World Bank loans was making similar sweet arrangements for the personal friends of its president?"

The IHT joins The Financial Times, Le Monde, Pakistan's Daily Times, Turkish Daily News, Kenya's Sunday Nation, Jamaica Gleaner, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, The Star-Ledger, Sunday Herald, and Investor's Business Daily in calling for his resignation.


Saturday, April 14, 2007

World Bank Staff sick of sleaze and corruption, begin letter campaign to Board

World Bank Staff reacted with disgust today to revelations that a staff blog was being censored and that references to a planned demonstration, calling for Wolfowitz' resignation were deleted.

The blog, located on the World Bank intranet, was established on Thursday, April 12, after Executive Directors forced the full disclosure of documents in the Wolfowitz sleaze scandal. The article entitled "Executive Directors Review Report, Release Documents" led to a blog of staff response and comments that had reached 259 individual postings on Saturday evening.

Today staff learned that not all blog postings were being posted in entirety and that any postings that referred to a planned demonstration were disappearing or not being posted.

The revelation cast frightening doubt on the anonymity of staff contributions to the blog, leaving hundreds of staff who have blogged anonymously fearing reprisals from the Wolfowitz team.

In response, staff have begun a letter writing campaign to their Executive Directors asking that the Board of the Bank call for Wolfowitz' resignation. The Executive Directors are the sitting chairs of the World Bank board, representing around 180 countries, and are responsible for its governance.

Staff are now blogging at http://wolfowitzmustresign.blogspot.com/