The recent allegations of abuse and corruption perpetrated by members of some Non-Governmental Organizations have shaken the world
The Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) are supported by the nobility of their causes, as well as their prestige, credibility and respect for their values as an organization. If they can not sustain these elements, they face the loss of support that allows them to continue their work. Currently, many NGOs are facing a severe crisis of credibility, due to the scandals that have shaken many of these organizations. Here we present some of the most talked about cases.
Leer en español: Casos de abuso y corrupción en las ONG que sacuden al mundo
Millions of dollars that do not reach their destination
In 2018, La Prensa of Honduras released some cases of corruption of several NGOs that obtained millions of dollars that did not reach their destination: the most vulnerable and in need. According to the Honduran newspaper, between 2010 and 2014, almost 12 million dollars were extracted from the treasury through the Dibattista and Todos Somos Honduras foundations that obtained contracts for projects that were not carried out.
El Nómada of Guatemala also reported another case uncovered in the Central American country. The Centro de Acción Legal, Ambiental y Social (CALAS) of Guatemala, dedicated to defending indigenous people against mining companies, is in trouble due to mismanagement of resources, among other things.
Between sex scandals and corruption cases
In February of the same year, the sex scandal of Oxfam, an NGO with a global presence, was revealed to the world. According to El Confidencial of España, members of the organization accessed sexual services paid for with NGO resources during missions in Haiti and Chad. The common denominator was a former director of the NGO: Roland van Hauwermeiren. Oxfam allowed impunity and even the accused persons served other NGOs without Oxfam preventing it in any way, explained the Spanish newspaper.
Hauwermeiren later worked for another NGO: Action Against Hunger in Bangladesh. To make matters worse, Oxfam's international president and former finance minister in the cabinet of former president Álvaro Colom, Juan Alberto Fuentes, was arrested for a corruption case in Guatemala.
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"Blue helmets and the allegations of sexual abuse in missions of peace"
The blue helmets have a large number of complaints of abuse. Only between April and June of this year, the United Nations (UN) received 70 complaints of sexual abuse committed by its staff and close collaborators, according to La Vanguardia of España. Some of these cases are being investigated in the UN and others in Member States, who are the ones that contribute their personnel to support the missions.
Therefore, there is no unique training or strict controls that allow the United Nations to guarantee conduct or actions. That is why it has been difficult to detect and investigate cases of abuse, especially those committed in Africa, said the same media. The secretary of the UN, the Portuguese António Guterres, has placed this issue among his priorities.
The future of humanitarian work
What happened in Honduras and Guatemala throughout the year is a reference to the reality of the corruption of some NGOs in their work. However, many organizations such as Doctors Without Borders and Save The Children have raised their voices and tightened their controls, said La Tercera of Chile. The newspaper cited as an example a statement to Reuters by the director of international programs of Save The Children: "The protocols of Save The Children are very strict: no adult can ever be alone with a child, there must always be at least one adult in the room or vehicle."
On the Day of Humanitarian Assistance we remember those who risk their lives to save those of others. Our thoughts with the families of the 6 workers of Save the Children killed in January in Afghanistan in an attack by Isis #NoSonUnObjetivo https://t.co/xXja9w5AcA pic.twitter.com/a5577Fdu1q- Save the Children Es (@SaveChildrenEs) August 19, 2018
LatinAmerican Post | Luis Angel Hrnández Liborio
Translated from "Casos de abuso y corrupción en las ONG que sacuden al mundo"