A World Bank committee report has found that President
Paul Wolfowitz had violated ethics rules by awarding promotion
and generous pay rise for his companion and that his involvement
had gone against the bank''s interests.
rejected the critical report while the United States showed
no sign of yielding in its support for its former deputy
defence secretary, saying the findings were no grounds
to dismiss him.
Wolfowitz''s contract requiring that he adhere to the Code
of Conduct for board officials and that he avoid any conflict
of interest, real or apparent, were violated," the
panel said of Wolfowitz''s handling of a pay and promotion
deal for World Bank Middle East expert Shaha Riza in 2005.
salary increase Ms. Riza received at Mr. Wolfowitz''s direction
was in excess of the range established by Rule 6.01,"
the report added.
called the findings "unbalanced and flawed"
and argued that the panel had omitted statements and documents
that support his position.
panel said Wolfowitz believes the blame lies with others
and not with him.
said he did not accept the bank''s policy on conflict of
interest and tried to bypass rules that he believed did
not apply to him. He sought to negotiate for himself a
resolution different from that which would have applied
to the staff he was selected to head, the panel said.
ad hoc group concludes that in actuality, Mr Wolfowitz
from the outset cast himself in opposition to the established
rules of the institution," it found.
panel referred a final decision to the bank''s 24-nation
board of shareholder governments, which meets on Tuesday
when Wolfowitz will make a final pitch to hold on to his
board is unlikely to make a final decision before Wednesday
and it was still unclear if they would be forced to vote
on the issue or decide by consensus.
deciding the issue, the board should consider "whether
Wolfowitz will be able to provide the leadership needed
to ensure that the bank continues to operate to the fullest
extent possible in achieving its mandate," the panel
37 country directors on the front line of the bank''s operations
said in a letter to the board and to Wolfowitz that the
leadership crisis had damaged the bank''s reputation and
effectiveness in fighting poverty.
Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson spoke to his counterparts
in several other countries telling them he did not think
"the facts merit
dismissal," according to a spokeswoman.
fact remains that Wolfowitz was a controversial choice
by President George W. Bush to head the poverty-fighting
institution because of his neoconservative background
and high-profile role as an architect of the Iraq war.