Statement: Final decision on the sexual misconduct investigation at UN Women


The following is a statement from the Executive Director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, regarding the sexual misconduct allegations involving a UN Women staff member:

“The investigative and disciplinary processes into allegations involving a UN Women staff member have concluded that sexual misconduct occurred. As a result, I have dismissed the staff member; this is the strongest disciplinary measure available within the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations (UN). Consequently, the staff member is prohibited from employment within the UN system.

I can also confirm emphatically that the former staff member cannot be protected by diplomatic immunity. Although UN Women does not have the authority to prosecute, the UN is guided by its obligation to bring credible allegations of criminal conduct to the attention of relevant national authorities. UN Women stands ready to cooperate with any national authority that decides to investigate this matter.

Furthermore, UN Women has made every effort to offer victim support throughout the investigation. We hold ourselves accountable to ensure a victim-centred approach in fulfillment of our mandate to advance and protect gender equality as a fundamental human right.

In support of the UN Secretary-General António Guterres’s commitment of zero-tolerance to violence against women, UN Women continues to advocate for a world free of violence and abuse. Our work with others across the entire UN system is rooted in improving policies and practices in this regard.”