Somalia donor money 'goes missing'
1 June 2012 Article Link
Large sums of money donated to Somalia's UN-backed interim government have not been accounted for, a World Bank report says.
The report, seen by the BBC, is being circulated at talks in Turkey on how to end Somalia's decades of anarchy.
It alleges a discrepancy of about $130m (£85m) in the accounts over two years.
UK foreign minister William Hague told the BBC that an international board to oversee the distribution of aid funds needed to be established urgently.
Somalia's transitional government mandate expires in August when it is due to hand over to an elected president.'Big question mark'
The revelations in the World Bank report come as several hundred Somali politicians meet representatives of more than 50 countries in Istanbul to try to win new funding for the long-term reconstruction of country.
The report stops short of making specific allegations, but does not rule out corruption as a possible explanation for the missing funds.
"There is a discrepancy in what comes in and there's a lack of accounting of how money has been spent," the report's author Joakim Gundel is quoted by US broadcaster Voice of America as saying.
"So that opens naturally a big question mark for sure."
The report, which looks at the years 2009 and 2010, also says the transitional government has no real accounting system nor does it publicly disclose financial statements.
Contacted by the BBC, Mr Gundel said he would not make any comment about the report until later on Friday.
But VOA reports him as saying that the missing millions could significantly bolster Somalia's security without relying on foreign donations.
The conference in Istanbul is the second major international gathering this year about Somalia's crisis. More on link