Major accounting firm clears UN intellectual property body of corruption allegations

13 December 2005 – A major accounting firm auditing the United Nations World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in the wake of media allegations of corruption has stated that it “cannot conclude that certain employees of WIPO and third parties concerned might have committed any fraud or dishonest acts,” the agency said today.

In September, WIPO Director-General Kamil Idris asked Ernst & Young, the international audit and consultancy firm, to conduct an independent external review, under the supervision of WIPO’s External Auditor, the Swiss Federal Audit Office, into the allegations.

In its report, Ernst & Young makes a number of recommendations to the Organization but does not support any of the allegations made in the news media, WIPO said.

In April of this year, the then UN spokesman in New York, Fred Eckhard, was asked about a WIPO probe into corruption there involving a name which had come up repeatedly during the Oil-for-Food investigation. Mr. Eckhard said then that the UN would await the results of the probe.

WIPO said today that the Ernst & Young report “brings to an end the recent allegations and unfounded attacks on the Organization that have appeared in a few news media.”

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