who will be next World Bank President What will they do


U.S.'s NPR reports on Riza's trip to Iraq. U.S. liberals (using the political-U.S. sense of "liberals"), and some others too, wake up listening to "Morning Edition" on National Public Radio. With Kathy Schalch getting this piece on the air today, that means a lot of people are aware of the earlier Wolfowitz-Riza scandal, from his days at the Defense Department. (see this posting) The story also puts former WB president Jean-Louis Sarbib's literal voice out there, saying the arrangement was "not above-board."

Sarbib, who, contrary to the way he is identified here, is no longer at the Bank, but rather with former WB James Wolfensohn's investment firm, says the following: "'I thought she had done this on a volunteer basis on her own time. I did not know anything about a contract with that firm,' Sarbib, who is responsible for the Bank's Middle East and North Africa Region, said. "This was unusual and not terribly above board."

The assignment may have violated conflict of interest rules for World Bank employees. "If you take contractual obligations with somebody else [outside the World Bank], there's something called the Committee on Outside Interests that has to pass judgment as to whether or not this is a potential conflict of interest," Sarbib said. "And I am not aware that there was any such request."

Soren Ambrose ~ April 18, 2007

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