The Yemeni internationally-recognized government vowed Wednesday to take strict measures against UN agencies involved in corruption and mismanaging the relief efforts in the war-torn country, calling the UN humanitarian coordinator to form a committee for investigating the corruption reported by The Associated Press.
An inclusive report on every agency's performance and work approach will be issued along with recommendations, said official minister of planning and international cooperation.
Dr. Najeeb al-Oaj vowed strict measures against groups involved in corruption and those with invalid licenses to work in Yemen, according to the Saudi Asharq Al-awsat paper.
The planning ministry had earlier sent letter calling UN and other international agencies to report on their performance and operational expenditure, Minister Oaj added, but little replies and reports have been received, although only one month remains before the deadline.
"Any agency doesn't send the response, its permit won't be renewed."
Another minister in the legitimate government called the UN Humanitarian Coordinator Lise Grande to form a committee to investigate corruption occurred in the performance of some UN agencies.
Abdul Raqeeb Fateh has sent letter to Grande asking for circumstances surrounding the corruption issues and results on investigation therein, and for disciplinary measures against staff involved, according to the Aden-based Saba.
The "government won't tolerate any misuse of the relief supplies by any aid agency," said Fateh, also head of the government relief committee.
Disclosure of corruption at UN high level requires comprehensive review of the UN agencies' performance in Yemen, he added, calling groups to follow transparency and accountability system provided for by UN humanitarian and relief laws, and to take measures assuring that corruption would not reoccur.
On Monday, an AP report said more than ten UN aid workers, deployed to deal with the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, were accused of illicit gain, in particular cooperating with conflict powers from all parties, with the purpose of unjust enrichment from food, medicines, fuel and funds internationally donated.
The AP has obtained documents on UN internal investigations, and interviewed eight aid workers and government former officials on allegations that unqualified people were hired in high-waged posts, hundreds of thousands of dollars were deposited into workers' private accounts, tens of suspected contracts were approved without appropriate documents, and tons of donated medicines and fuel disappeared.
The UNICEF is conducting an investigation into one of its staff's allowing a Houthi leader to travel on one of its vehicles, to avoid potential airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition warplanes, said AP.
Valuable evidences collected by UN investigators from WHO staff were seized by Houthis last October at Sana'a airport, following a notification from a WHO staff member with links to the group, lest "aid funding theft is disclosed," according to the AP.
Yemen has been racked by a 4-year bloody conflict between the internationally-recognized Yemeni government's forces, backed by a Saudi-led coalition, and the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels who ousted the government in 2014.
The conflict has triggered what the UN calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with most of the population in need for a type of humanitarian aid and immediate protection, including 14 million people risking famine and some 1.8 million children suffering malnutrition.