Thursday April 20, 2023
The funds were aimed at Somalia’s national reconciliation process and preventing further political violence, according to the Foreign Ministry.
Finland’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs plans to recover 50,000 euros from the Finn Church Aid NGO after being unable to verify the funds were used correctly, the ministry announced on Thursday.
The ministry said it wanted the funds returned “because it has not been possible to verify that funds have been used in accordance with the government grant decision.”
The funding in question was granted in 2021 by the ministry’s Peace Mediation Centre, aimed at promoting Somalia’s national reconciliation process.
The ministry said it granted the money “for strengthening the broad-based participation of Somali people in national consultations and thereby preventing the escalation of pre-election political violence. However, it has not been possible to verify that the funds were used for this purpose.”
According to its website, Finn Church Aid(siirryt toiseen palveluun) is “Finland’s largest international aid organisation with more than 70 years of experience.”
The NGO was founded in 1947 to coordinate international aid to Finland from the US and Sweden following World War II, the organisation said.
The ministry said it discovered the problem through an internal audit carried out by Finn Church Aid.
The foreign affairs ministry said it had launched an independent audit of the organisation’s operations to ensure that it has “sufficient measures [in place] to strengthen its risk management processes.”
The ministry concluded its announcement on the matter by saying that it “takes all suspected cases of misuse very seriously and will address any detected problems.”