U.S. Representative Ambassador Joseph M. Torsella today read the joint statement of Australia, Canada, Norway, Italy and Sweden, as well as my own country, the United States at the second regular executive Board Session of UNDP, UNFPA and UNOPS.
The joint statement highlighted that public disclosure of internal audits is urgently needed to sustain confidence in UN agencies.
The countries thanked UNDP for the demonstration at the informal meeting on September 1 of a secure web-based platform for viewing internal audit reports. It represents an important step towards the culture of transparency and accountability that must be a hallmark of the work of the vital public institutions.
The statement noted that remote viewing of internal audit reports will enhance the exercise of due diligence by facilitating easier access to audit reports for Member States, intergovernmental donor organizations and the Global Fund. We request information on when UNDP, UNFPA and UNOPS will begin remote viewing. The countries are looking forward to full and expeditious implementation.
The joint statement also calls upon UNDP, UNFPA and UNOPS to present a plan with clear targets at the next Executive Board meeting for achieving full public disclosure of internal audits, with appropriate due process and privacy safeguards.
The statement highlighted that donors, recipient countries, partner NGOs, and private individuals should be able see to what extent program resources are being adequately safeguarded against waste and abuse. It noted that international institutions must be able to withstand the public scrutiny that comes from disclosing internal audit reports.