UNITED NATIONS, Feb. 9 (UPI) -- The United Nations is honoring a request by the U.S. House Investigations Committee for audits of the World Meteorological Organization.
The request came after the New York Times published a story Wednesday about a formal audit at the Geneva-based agency and allegations a now-missing Sudanese employee stole as much as $3 million.
"We will respond quickly to the congressmen," a U.N. spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, told United Press International, confirming the request had been received.
Dujarric noted external audits are public documents and the General Assembly in December approved a resolution mandating internal audits be given any member state requesting them.
Spokeswoman Marie Okabe earlier said the WMO fraud was first uncovered in July 2003 by personnel from the specialized agency and the suspected staffer was suspended with pay until September 2003 when he was fired. Swiss authorities have a warrant out for his arrest.
When a new chief of the agency took over a year ago, reforms relating to integrity, efficiency and transparency were instituted, Okabe said.