Cases
© Peter Høvring

Current cases

July 2016: Suspected Fraud in Programme Supported by DanChurchAid

Content of the complaint: DanChurchAid I co-financing a programme in Sudan which is being implemented by an act alliance partner organization. The financial report for 2015 from the auditor included a management letter mentioning significant risk of fraud related to procurement of fuel. This was picked up by the financial controller and is now being followed up on.

What did we do: As a funder for the programme, DCA has asked the implementing partner to elaborate on their actions and steps to follow up on the risk of fraud.

What did we learn: Learnings will be gathered when the case is concluded.

February 2016: Harrassment and Extortion of DCA Staff in DRC

Content of the complaint: In the Port of Goma, Dem. Rep. Congo, An international member of staff with double citizenship is on his way to Bukavu to finish a field mission. In DRC and other African countries, expatriate staffs of African origin are more frequently subject to harassment by the authorities than Western expats. Since his foreign travel documents have previously caused unnecessary complications at the migration authorities, the DCA staff preferred using his Congolese ID as much as possible, in particular a document known as “Carte d’électeur”. According to the migration authorities at the port of Goma, that piece of ID that the DCA staff is carrying is a counterfeit document, although it was issues by government authorities and has been used since 2011 without any problems. Fortunately, the DCA staff had other ID documents, including a Congolese passport, to support the veracity of his Congolese citizenship, and this ultimately convinced the migration authorities. However, the authorities maintained their position on requesting the DCA staff to pay a fine for procession of counterfeit ID, which is a serious infringement. After lengthy discussions, the staff member was fined to pay 300 USD, but did not get any receipt although he insisted.

What did we do: Follow up The following day, staff member managed to get the document back from the migration authorities. DCA intends to contact all relevant authorities to get a formal explanation and hopefully an official receipt for the fine and an authentic version of the “Carte d’électeur”.

What did we learn: the incident will be reported to the local INGO community encouraging the focal point to discuss this issue with the national authorities so that expatriate staff of African origin (or any other staff members) do not get harassed and accused for being spies or the like. Further lessons learned can be reported once the case is closed.

January 2016: Suspected Fraud in Partner Organisation

Content of the complaint: The suspicion was raised by a programme officer of DCA, who has allegedly received information from different staff of the said partner organisation concerning nepotism, embezzlement, forgery and other forms of corruption conducted by several people in the organisation.

What did we do: As there are no hard evidence, DCA has decided, as a first step, to give the independent auditors a notice about this, so that they will pay specific attention to the issues raised by the complainant during their routine audit. If the suspicion of irregularities are confirmed, then the cooperation is not expected to be continued, however if the audit does not render any evidence, the continuation of the cooperation with the partner will be re-assessed.

What did we learn: Learnings will be gathered when the case is concluded.

 

January 2016: Claims of corruption under investigation

Content of the complaint: DCA has received a complaint on a partner organisation in one of our partner countries. The complainer claims that the organisation is corrupt and misuses funds received by DCA and other donors. The allegations includes nepotism, embezzlement, fraud and sexual harassment.

What did we do: DCA is now investigating the allegation in collaboration with sister organisations that are also collaborating with the partner organisation. Based on the initial internal investigations DCA will decide if and how to proceed with further investigations. The case is very sensitive and hence DCA is doing everything it can to protect the whistle-blower and the people under allegation by treating it with the highest degree of confidentiality.

What did we learn: Conclusions and lessons learned can only be drawn when the case has been duly investigated and closed, but for now DCA as satisfied to conclude, that the complainer has had the required trust in our systems to make use of it and inform us about this potential misuse of funds. 

 

August 2015: Suspected fraud by staff in partner organisation

Content of the complaint: The suspicion has arisen during the partner’s financial reporting as the partner had included accountabilities dating a few years back. A thorough look at these accountabilities by DCA finance unit in the regional office raised several questions about the validity of the accountabilities, which the partner failed to explain adequately at a meeting between DCA and the partner. Subsequently the audit looked into the mentioned accountabilities and found that there were strong indicators of fraud. DCA expects that the irregularities may have been created by one or two staff, and hence as such are not believed to be institutional fraud.

What did we do: DCA has asked the partner to investigate it internally and report back to DCA within a set timeframe. Until then, all project assets, funds and activities have been temporarily suspended/halted.

What did we learn: Learnings will be gathered when the case is concluded.