OAS

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 GENERAL STANDARDS TO GOVERN THE OPERATIONS OF THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT

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GENERAL STANDARDS TO GOVERN THE OPERATIONS OF THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT[1]

CHAPTER X

STANDARDS ON REAL OR APPARENT CONFLICTS OF INTEREST APPLICABLE
TO THE SECRETARY GENERAL, THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY GENERAL,
AND THE OTHER STAFF MEMBERS OF THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT

            Article 137.  Solicitation, Acceptance, or Use.  The Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General, during their terms of office, may not solicit or accept, directly or indirectly, any gift, gratuity, loan, favor, or any other thing of monetary value, from any person, association, corporation, or business entity that has, or is seeking to obtain, a contractual or other business or financial relationship with the Organization of American States.

            The Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General must refrain from using or appearing to use their office for the purpose of private gain for themselves or other persons.

            Article 138.  Conflict of Financial Interests.  The Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General may not have any direct or indirect financial interest that conflicts substantially, or appears to conflict substantially, with the proper discharge of their duties in the interest of the Organization, and of their responsibilities as prescribed in the Charter of the OAS and in these General Standards.

            Article 139.  Avoidance of Other Activities.  The Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General shall avoid any action, whether or not specifically prohibited by these Standards, which might result in, or create the appearance of: 

a.  Giving preferential treatment to any organization or person;

b.  Losing complete independence or impartiality of action;

c.  Making an administrative decision without observing established procedures;

d.  Adversely affecting the good name and integrity of the General Secretariat.

            Article 140.  Competence of the Permanent Council.  If the Permanent Council considers that a specific matter could give rise to a possible conflict of interest, the Secretary General or the Assistant Secretary General, as the case may be, shall either: (1) disqualify himself form working on any matter that is directly or indirectly related to the entity concerned; or (2) eliminate the conflict by divesting himself of the interest, at his option.

            Article 141.  Sworn Statement on Connections and Debts.  At the beginning of the period for which they were elected or reelected, and at the end of their terms of office, the Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General shall submit to the Permanent Council a sworn statement containing the following information:

a.  A list of all business associations, enterprises, companies, and other entities with which they are connected, directly or indirectly, with an indication of the nature of the connection, when one exists, together with a statement of the amount of their financial or business participation in those associations, enterprises, corporations, or other entities;

b.  A list of creditors, other than those to whom they may be indebted by reason of a mortgage on property that they occupy as a private residence, or to whom they may be indebted for ordinary household and living expenses, such as household furnishings, automobile, education, vacation, and similar expenses; and

c.  A statement of their net worth.

            Article 142.  Conflicts of Interest of Staff Members.  The Secretary General shall establish regulations to make certain that the staff members of the General Secretariat have no direct or indirect interests that may conflict with the correct performance of their duties in the Organization and with the responsibilities assigned to them by the OAS Charter, these General Standards, and other relevant provisions.  These regulations shall include:

a.  The duty to present a sworn statement in which the staff members affirm that they maintain no connections that could involve conflicts of interest according to the pertinent provisions.

b.  Besides the statement described in paragraph (a), the staff members mentioned in paragraph (d) shall present an additional sworn statement, which shall include:

i.  All associations, enterprises, or companies with which they are connected, directly or indirectly, with an indication of the nature of the connection, as well as a list of their creditors, with the exceptions specified in Article 141 (b).

ii.  Their personal net worth as it stands at the beginning and at the conclusion of their duties.

c.  Annual updating, by the staff members, of the statements referred to in paragraphs (a) and (b) (i), and whenever there is a change in the situation described in these statements.

d.  The statements referred to in paragraph (b) shall be presented by the following staff members:

i.  Those holding positions of trust defined in Article 21;

ii.  Department or office directors and other chiefs of administrative units who, although they do not hold positions of trust, are directly subordinate, from the standpoint of rank, to the Secretary General, the Assistant Secretary General, the Executive Secretary for Integral Development, or an Assistant Secretary; and

iii.  Staff members who, as a part of their normal activities, participate in a substantial way in recommending, selecting, approving, or paying staff members, independent contractors, or other firms or enterprises from which the General Secretariat purchases goods or services.

            Article 143.  Penalties.  Failure to comply with the provisions of paragraphs (a), (b), (c), and (d) of the preceding article shall be penalized in accordance with articles 54 through 56.

            Article 144.  Final Settlement of Credits.  Except in the case of death or disability, the General Secretariat shall withhold final settlement of credits for benefits, entitlements, retirement, and pensions, until it is demonstrated that the provisions of Articles 141 (c) and 142 (b) of these General Standards have been met.

           Article 145. Performance Contracts for Former Staff Members.[2] The fee for services (not including per diem and reimbursable expenses) paid under a CPR financed by the Regular Fund to a former staff member of the General Secretariat within the two years following his/her separation from services shall not exceed the remuneration (basic salary, post adjustment, dependency allowance and tax reimbursement) paid previously to the staff member.


[1].  Adopted by the General Assembly through resolution AG/RES. 123 (III-O/73) and amended through resolutions AG/RES. 248 (VI-O/76), AG/RES. 256 (VI-O/76), AG/RES. 257 (VI-O/76), AG/RES. 301 (VII-O/77), AG/RES. 359 (VIII-O/78), AG/RES. 404 (IX-O/79), AG/RES. 438 (IX-O/79), AG/RES. 479 (X-O/80), AG/RES. 671 (XIII-O/83), AG/RES. 672 (XIII-O/83), AG/RES. 731 (XIV-O/84), AG/RES. 791 (XV-O/85), AG/RES. 842 (XVI-O/86), AG/RES. 981 (XIX-O/89), AG/RES. 1036 (XX-O/90), AG/RES. 1137 (XXI-O/91), AG/RES. 1321 (XXV-O/95), AG/RES. 1322 (XXV-O/95), AG/RES. 1. (XXV-E/98), AG/RES. 3 (XXVI-E/99), AG/RES. 1725 (XXX-O/00), AG/RES. 1839 (XXXI-O/01), AG/RES. 1873 (XXXII-O/02), AG/RES. 1909 (XXXII-O/02), AG/RES. 2059 (XXXIV-O/04), AG/RES. 2156 (XXXV-O/05), AG/RES. 2157 (XXXV-O/05), AG/RES. 2302 (XXXVII-O/07), AG/RES. 2353 (XXXVII-O/07), AG/RES. 2754 (XLII-O/12), AG/RES. 2755 (XLII-O/12), AG/RES. 2756 (XLII-O/12), AG/RES. 2778 (XLIII-O/13), AG/RES. 2817 (XLIV-O/14), AG/RES. 1 (XLVIII-E/14), AG/RES. 2889 (XLVI-O/16) and by the Permanent Council through resolutions CP/RES. 652 (1033/95), CP/RES. 703 (1122/97), CP/RES. 761 (1217/99), CP/RES. 910 (1568/06), CP/RES. 919 (1597/07) and CP/RES. 1062 (2069/16) pursuant to the authority conferred by the General Assembly in resolutions AG/RES. 1319 (XXV-O/95), AG/RES. 1382 (XXVI-O/96), AG/RES. 1603 (XXVIII-O/98),  AG/RES. 2257 (XXXVI-O/06) and AG/RES. 1 (L-E/15), respectively.

[2].  Article added as a result of resolution AG/RES. 2059 (XXXIV-O/04) of the General Assembly at its thirty-fourth regular session in June 2004.