Global perspective Human stories

Financial disclosure statements of numerous senior UN officials made public

Financial disclosure statements of numerous senior UN officials made public

Following the lead of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro, numerous senior United Nations officials have made their financial disclosure statements public, it was announced today.

Mr. Ban sees public disclosure as “an important voluntary initiative as it demonstrates that UN staff members understand the importance of both the general public and the Member States of the United Nations being assured that, in the discharge of their official duties and responsibilities, UN staff members will not be influenced by any consideration associated with his/her private interests,” according to a statement issued by his spokesperson.

Both Mr. Ban and Ms. Migiro had already made their financial disclosure statements public in 2007, following their confidential review by PricewaterhouseCoopers, the firm hired by the UN to examine such documents.

Although not required, the Secretary General had encouraged senior officers – at the ranks of Under-Secretary-General and Assistant Secretary-General – to follow his lead on an entirely voluntary basis.

The “Ethical Standards” section of Mr. Ban’s website contains a current list of senior UN officials who have chosen to provide a public summary of their disclosure, including links to their statements. As other staff members indicate their consent to the Ethics Office, these names and disclosures will be added.

Each official’s statement must be reviewed by PwC before a public summary is made available, with the 2007 review cycle by the firm having ended on 31 December 2007.

Shortly after taking office last January, Mr. Ban said he was making his statement public “to set an early example” of his goal as Secretary-General to promote “the highest standards of integrity and ethical behaviour” at the world body.