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(RED) responds to Global Fund fraud reports

(RED) chief executive Seb Bishop responds to media reports that the Global Fund is ravaged by corruption.

Seb Bishop International CEO, (RED)

I write with reference to TheJournal.ie’s article of 25th January, “€25m missing form anti AIDS Global Fund charity”, referencing the findings of a Global Fund audit of funds published last year by the Fund itself.

AP took certain facts from this report and chose to run it as new news which has since been sensationalised along the way.

The Global Fund has zero tolerance for corruption. The original AP news report refers to well-known incidents that were surfaced and reported by the Global Fund itself and acted on immediately last year. There are no new revelations in recent media articles.

In his report, the Global Fund’s Inspector General listed misuse of funds in four out of 145 countries which receive grants, representing $34 million out of the more than $13 billion the Global Fund has at work in lifesaving programmes around the world. As a result immediate steps were taken in Djibouti, Mali, Mauritania and Zambia to halt grants, recoup funds and prosecute those involved.

While any fraud is inexcusable and especially where people’s lives are at stake, this accounts for three-tenths of one percent, a fractional amount across the entire fund. Additionally I would like to stress that no (RED) money was involved in these matters.

(RED) chose the Global Fund to administer the money generated by the sale of (RED) products precisely due to their aggressive auditing tools and best practice transparency over their findings.

Fraud and corruption exist all around the world. That is why it is important to have the stringent policies in place, as the Global Fund does, to surface it early, address it quickly and make it public. We should be thankful that these policies exist so that the lifesaving work can continue and we can root out corruption that could otherwise derail it.

To date, programmes supported by The Global Fund have saved 6.5 million lives through providing AIDS treatment for 3 million people, anti-tuberculosis treatment for 7.7 million people and the distribution of 160 million insecticide-treated nets for the prevention of malaria.

Seb Bishop is the international Chief Executive Officer of (RED).

A response from the Global Fund to the same article can be found in the comments section of the original piece.

About the author:

Seb Bishop  / International CEO, (RED)

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