Desmond Tutu Steps Down As Ambassador As Sex Scandal Rocks Oxfam

Desmond Tutu Steps Down As Ambassador As Sex Scandal Rocks Oxfam

By Aaron Abraham | Staff Reporter on February 16, 2018
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Desmond Tutu, Oxfam, Sex Scandal
Bishop Desmond Tutu
South African archbishop Desmond Tutu cut ties Thursday, February 15, 2018, with charity organization Oxfam, saying he was “deeply disappointed” by allegations of sexual misconduct by its humanitarian workers.
The 86-year-old Nobel laureate, who was a leader in South Africa’s anti-apartheid movement, cited “allegations of immorality and possible criminality” in stepping down from his role as an Oxfam global ambassador.The archbishop “is also saddened by the impact of the allegations on the many thousands of good people who have supported Oxfam’s righteous work,” a statement from his office said.

Senegalese singer Baaba Maal and British actress Minnie Driver have also quit their positions as celebrity ambassadors.

Tutu’s resignation comes as the scandal at Oxfam grew with its admission on Thursday, that it had made a “serious error” after a worker who was sacked over claims of sexual misconduct in earthquake-shattered Haiti was rehired later in the year.

According to the charity, a number of workers were sacked or resigned in 2011 in connection with claims of sexual misconduct while delivering aid after the major earthquake in 2010. One of the fired staff members was later rehired as a consultant in Ethiopia.

“Hiring the man, even in an emergency as a short-term consultant, [was a] serious error and should never have happened,” the aid group said in the statement, adding that it is looking into any issues that might have occurred during the man’s service in Ethiopia.

The Times of London reported that local Haitian women and possibly children were sexually exploited by Oxfam workers during the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake. The Times said a leaked internal report discussed “sexual exploitation, the downloading of pornography, bullying and intimidation” by the Oxfam staff.

The charity said in 2011 it had launched an investigation into “allegations of misconduct against a small number of staff.”

The investigation led to the dismissal of four staff members and the resignation of three others, including the Oxfam director in Haiti.

Read more at DPI International

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