The President of the World Bank Robert Zoellick has said that corruption is a dirty business that will not sort itself out by politely and discreetly informing wrongdoers of their missteps. Speaking at the 2011 World Bank integrity record he stated, “we need to instill a moral revulsion to corruption, both across geography and generations.”
The Bank announced in Washington its integrity results for the last fiscal year, highlighted progress in managing investigations, pursuing delinquent companies and working with national authorities to advance national enforcement action. He said that The Bank’s results were the work of institution’s Integrity Vice Presidency (INT), which provides integrity and anti-corruption safeguards to ensure that Bank Group funds go toward promoting development and overcoming poverty.
According to the report during this fiscal year, the World Bank debarred 32 entities, and honoured 37 cross-debarments together with other multilateral development banks. The Bank also built preventive precautions in 48 high-risk projects and stopped a number of tainted contracts from being executed. In addition, the Bank developed tailored preventive and forensic training reaching 2,700 government officials and Bank staff”.
This year the report further said, the Bank achieved some promising progress relating to referrals stemming from its investigations, as evidenced by actions taken by the Norwegian National Authority for the Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime, the UK Serious Fraud Office and the Indonesia’s Special Crime Unit.
“We expect national authorities to give proper attention and consideration to the Bank Group’s referrals of investigative information,” said Zoellick. “Ideally, this should lead to their undertaking competent investigations, prosecutions, and adjudication within the country—but it often has not. Real progress can only happen when national authorities dedicate proper attention to our referrals of investigative information.”
According to the report “Taking a consistent aim at delinquent entities, the World Bank has introduced negotiated resolutions as part of its group’s operating model and as part of sanctions reforms, which were approved by the World Bank Board of Directors in September 2010.
“The Bank’s negotiated resolution with the engineering firm Lotti, which included a 27-month debarment and a US$ 350,000 restitution payment to the Government of Indonesia, set the tone for a higher impact mode of delivery that should raise public confidence in international criminal justice,” said World Bank Integrity Vice President, Leonard McCarthy.
On the global anticorruption front, the Bank has launched the International Corruption Hunters Alliance, which coincided with the Bank’s signing of 18 bilateral cooperation agreements with national anticorruption entities and development agencies.
“Cooperation with our partners translates to supporting our independent processes through sharing information and coordinating parallel investigations, “said McCarthy. “This is a concrete step in fighting corruption and ensuring that the World Bank’s resources are focused on fighting crime against poverty reduction and economic growth.”
The World Bank Integrity Vice Presidency (INT) is responsible for investigating allegations of fraud, collusion and corruption in World Bank projects, capitalizing on the experience of a multilingual and highly specialized team of investigators and forensic accountants. INT’s work during this fiscal year included:
· 32 debarments of firms and individuals for engaging in wrongdoing while jointly debarring 37 entities with other Multilateral development Banks
· Based on an INT referral, the UK’s Serious Fraud Office ordered Macmillan Publishers Limited to pay over £11 million. WBG debarred Macmillan for 6 years (2010), for bribery linked to an education project in Sudan.