UK Government Reviewing Cooperation with Oxfam Amid Prostitution Scandal

Haiti was devastated by the quake in 2010 that killed more than 220,000 people

Haiti was devastated by the quake in 2010 that killed more than 220,000 people

One source claimed to have seen footage of a "full-on Caligula orgy" with girls in Oxfam T-shirts although this did not form a part of the 2011 report by the charity which did state that "it can not be ruled out that any of the prostitutes were under-aged".

The use of prostitutes by Oxfam staff in Haiti was described yesterday by Liz Truss, the former justice secretary, as "shocking, sickening and depressing".

The move follows growing pressure on the charity after an investigation by The Times found young sex workers were hired by senior staff in Haiti after the 2010 quake which devastated the island and left up to 300,000 people dead.

The charity said it had allowed Van Hauwermeiren to resign on the basis that he fully cooperated with and supported the investigation.

One of the staffers permitted to resign without outcome was Oxfam country director Roland van Hauwermeiren, 68, who the report said admitted to keeping prostitutes at the villa rented for him using donated funds.

One source told the newspaper there was footage of a "full-on Caligula orgy" with women in Oxfam T-shirts.

In its statement Friday, Oxfam said that it had informed its trustees, the United Kingdom government's Charity Commission and global development agency, as well as other major donors such as the European Union, the World Health Organization and other United Nations agencies of the investigation and the outcome.

"Our primary aim was always to root out and take action against those involved and we publicly announced, including to media, both the investigation and the action we took as a result".

Even before the latest allegations, Britain's government ordered Oxfam Friday to hand over files on implicated staff to the Charity Commission, which regulates the sector.

'We are now engaged with the charity regarding its approach to safeguarding following more recent allegations.

"We will expect the charity to provide us with assurance that it has learnt lessons from past incidents and is taking all necessary steps to safeguard all who come into contact with it".

Oxfam has said it launched an immediate internal investigation in 2011 which found a "culture of impunity" among some staff, but denied it was behind a "cover-up" to protect its reputation.

There were 87 cases of alleged sexual exploitation in Oxfam between 2016 and 2017.

It also condemned the behaviour of some former staff after the Times newspaper claimed aid workers were paying for sex while working on a relief mission.

The Times' report was based off sources familiar with the organisation's work in Haiti around that time as well as a report summarising an internal Oxfam investigation into the allegations from the time.

It also added: "Allegations that underage girls may have been involved were not proven".

But in its statement, DFID said the charity had fallen short.

Oxfam said it has now set up a whistleblowing hotline as a result of its 2011 investigation.

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