WASHINGTON, DC — Over 60 participants representing 40 organizations from the international development implementer community recently attended a U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Office of Inspector General (OIG)-hosted roundtable on July 18th to hear USAID’s and USAID OIG’s expectations regarding fraud prevention, compliance, and reporting. Participants reviewed debarment and suspension processes, discussed specifics concerning expectations of cooperation with USAID and USAID OIG, and shared best practices in combatting fraud. Key staff from USAID’s Compliance Division and General Counsel also contributed.
Inspector General Ann Calvaresi Barr kicked off the roundtable by highlighting the opportunity to discuss timely issues, communicate USAID OIG expectations, and share best practices and roadblocks implementers are facing in the fight against fraud. “In short,” said IG Calvaresi Barr, “forums like this help advance our mutual goal of working as efficiently and effectively as possible to protect U.S. government funds.” She was joined by William Steiger, USAID Chief of Staff, who reiterated the importance of the work of OIG and the commitment to reforming agency processes.
Dan Altman, Assistant Inspector General (AIG) for Investigations, presented an overview of USAID OIG and its priority oversight areas as well as common fraud schemes involving USAID operations. AIG Altman emphasized the importance of dealing with fraud in a fast and open way with OIG, and encouraged implementers to share all relevant information. Other presentations included overviews of the suspension and debarment process as well as the USAID Compliance Division, and members of the International Development Ethics Group and other attendees discussed implementer best practices. The event concluded with a question and answer session that included AIG Altman and Tom Yatsco, AIG for Audit.
This roundtable held in Washington DC builds on ongoing efforts by OIG to increase fraud awareness among USAID implementers and staff in fraud prevention, compliance, and reporting. USAID OIG conducted over 200 fraud awareness briefings worldwide in the first half of fiscal year 2017 to over 5,400 attendees.