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OXFAM shows commitment, stamping out graft in Aceh

OXFAM shows commitment to stamping out graft in Aceh.

Oxfam should be congratulated for its difficult decision in temporarily suspending part of its operations in a district of Aceh province due to corruption concerns, according to aid watchdog AID/WATCH.

Whilst many in Aceh still require urgent assistance this action highlights a 'zero tolerance' approach by Oxfam to financial irregularities at all costs.

"The decision to announce a temporary suspension to some of Oxfam's operations due to concerns of corruption in part of their activities, indicates a strong commitment to ensuring aid is delivered in an open and accountable manner and importantly - free of corruption" said
AID/WATCHs Tim O'Connor

Allegations of corruption within the overall aid efforts have plagued the reconstruction in Aceh, Indonesia's most corrupt province, since tsunami reconstruction began in 2005. A recent report by Eye on Aceh and AID/WATCH 'A people's agenda? Reconstruction in Post tsunami Aceh', highlighted Oxfams ability to effectively tackle corruption.

One particular case study from the report singled out a corrupt payment made by workers associated with Oxfam for timber permits. Oxfam was able to quickly tackle the issue and get the 5 million Rupiah ($538 approx.) that had been paid back.

"No agency operating in Aceh is immune from the issue of corruption in Aceh. This recent example establishes a clear precedent of zero tolerance that other donors should follow", according to AID/WATCH.
"Corruption can not be tolerated and taking this extreme action will foster a stronger sense of trust between the donor agency, the recipients and the supporters of Oxfam' said O'Connor.

AID/WATCH hopes that the issue of alleged irregularities can be quickly and satisfactorily addressed so OXFAM can resume the important task of assisting in the reconstruction of Aceh.

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