Minnie Driver quits Oxfam after 20 years over Haiti sex scandal

Minnie Driver quits Oxfam after 20 years over Haiti sex scandal

Driver stepped down after claims Oxfam staff had paid for sex from prostitutes in Haiti in 2011 while delivering aid to the earthquake-stricken country as well as allegations of staff using sex workers in Chad.

Oxfam has faced severe criticism for a lack of transparency over misconduct allegations against staff members accused of using prostitutes in Haiti following a devastating 2010 quake.

The charity said it launched an immediate investigation in 2011 which found a "culture of impunity" among some staff but has denied trying to cover up the scandal.

Its chairman, Juan Alberto Fuentes, was arrested in Guatemala on Tuesday as part of an investigation into the graft and its deputy chief executive, Penny Lawrence, quit on Monday saying she was "ashamed" of how the organisation had handled sex scandals.

"All I can tell you about this bad revelation about Oxfam is that I am devastated".

Save The Children said it had never employed van Hauwermeiren, who left his role with Merlin nine years before the two organisations merged.

A spokeswoman said Mordaunt would discuss how her office and the NCA could work together to implement laws on sexual exploitation and abuse, but added that the meeting did not relate specifically to criminal activity involving Oxfam staff.

Roland van Hauwermeiren, a 68-year-old native Belgian, became the center of global embarrassment for Oxfam after reports in the last week surfaced allegations of orgies with sex workers in Haiti after its quake and hiring prostitutes in war-torn Chad.

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In a statement Ms Driver said she was "nothing short of horrified" by the allegations.

"The approach that we are taking is that we need to triple check that matters of the past have been appropriately dealt with", she said.

Oxfam now faces a battle to prevent other high-profile ambassadors from stepping down as well as making sure the United Kingdom government does not withdraw the £32 million (Dh163m) of funds it receives.

One of the best-known worldwide NGOs, with aid programmes running across the globe, Oxfam was under threat of losing its British government funding over sexual misconduct allegations first reported by the Times newspaper last week.

After these revelations, Penny Mordaunt, the Secretary of State for International Development, summoned Oxfam officials to demand all information on this case, threatening to cut the yearly public aid donated to the NGO (€35.7 million in government subsidies in 2017).

In a statement, Oxfam Quebec said it was shocked and outraged by the Haiti allegations.

"I am very clear: we will not work with any organisation that does not live up to the high standards on safeguarding and protection that we require". It's unclear what role the former Oxfam employee was given at the Catholic charity.

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