This is the story of how there was ONE ethical, decent human being in the UN. He was the Director of the Field Operations & Technical Cooperation Division in the Office of the HIgh Commissioner of Human Rights in Geneva, and – as it turned out – the one and only man to do anything about the ongoing sexual abuse of children in the Central African Republic. In return, he was rewarded by the retaliation of the UN’s own version of Act 1, Scene 1, Macbeth.
Now interestingly enough, Kompass had already been the subject of an OIOS investigation, but the complaint against him could not be substantiated.
That, however, was not what senior management wanted to hear. Malcorra (the Secretary-General’s Chief of Staff) knew that Kompass was going to be cleared even before the OIOS report was out; is why Lapointe (the Under-Secretary-General of Oversight) who is supposed to be “independent” was sharing this information…..
That, alas is one of many questions about the “independence” of OIOS that the UN does not want to have to answer.
So, to cut a long story short, when the report of the sexual abuse of children in the Central African Republic reached Anders Kompass in Geneva, he did something about it. It was clear that the children were being sexually abused, not by UN personnel, but by French soldiers who were part of the quite separate French peacekeeping operation in that country. The UN had no jurisdiction to act, so Kompass did the only thing that could be done; he sent the report to the French Government for them to take action.
To their credit, the French immediately tried to do something about it. Investigators were sent to the Central African Republic immediately, only to find that the UN would not co-operate with them.
When they learned that Kompass had provided the information to the French authorities, this was interpreted by senior officials of the UN as being something that could – possibly – be construed as “misconduct”, whihc would allow them to do what they clearly wanted to do all along, and that was to find an excuse to get rid of Anders Kompass. The coven of Malcorra, Dubinsky and Lapointe, who cared nothing for the welfare of the victims of this sexual abuse, decided that Kompass was clearly guilty and simply had to be punished. There maight have to be the formality of a misconduct investigation but Malcorra could rely on her friend Lapointe to make sure that that was done and that the ‘correct” answer was returned.
Unpalatable as it may be, they facts here are that children – little boys of 9 and 10 years old – were being systematically and repeatedly abused, and staff of both the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights and UNICEF merrily took notes and wrote memos, and did NOTHING to stop it. Whe this came to the attention of members of the Senior Management Committee, they too were quite happy to sit around and do NOTHING for the victims. Instead, all they were interested in doing was punishing Anders Kompass, describing what he did as “leaking” confidential information.
This was not “justice”, it was not even prudent management. It was nothing but a witch-hunt, and it was not the first time the UN has acted in this way.
But what does this have to do with me?
Well, if we assume that there was absolutely nothing else going on, and for argument’s sake we assume there were only TWO staff members in the whole Organisation tied up in misconduct complaints, and one was Peter Gallo and the other was Anders Kompass…… well one could make the case that Lapointe and Dubinsky went along with Malcorra’s lynching of Anders Kompass because they owed her a favour for having made sure Peter Gallo’s retaliation claim ended up in the waste paper basket……