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Monday, February 18, 2008

NZAID Needs Help

Must read Wellington blogger The Hive is well aware of the problems within New Zealand's government aid agency-NZAID.

From Queen Bee

Audrey Young has a good article on the problems at NZAID in today's NZ Herald. Amongst other things Young reports that :

MPs on a parliamentary select committee are urging the Government to temporarily suspend funding increases planned for the New Zealand Agency for International Development (NZAid), saying its systems are too weak to cope.

The foreign affairs and defence select committee is going to monitor the agency quarterly because of concerns over weaknesses in its controls in its Wellington office and overseas posts, it said yesterday in its financial review of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Concerns about the agency are so acute that the Office of the Auditor General is receiving monthly reports on it.

The aid agency is a semi-autonomous body within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.


This is pretty serious stuff. We will also be keeping this issue under close scrutiny, but wonder why the Government doesn't use this as an excuse for a more fundamental review on NZAID? Clearly having it sit outside MFAT doesn't work. Why not reintegrate it? And is anything happening to NZAID's senior managers? They are clearly not up to the job.

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