In an effort to maintain standards for people`s safeguarding, the UK has halted funding for Oxfam following sexual misconduct allegations.
This follows the suspension of two members of Oxfam staff in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Investigations into the alleged abuses of power, including bullying and sexual misconduct, are underway.
In a statement, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) said: “All organisations bidding for UK aid must meet the high standards of safeguarding required to keep the people they work with safe.
“Given the most recent reports, which call into question Oxfam’s ability to meet those standards, we will not consider any new funding to Oxfam until the issues have been resolved.”
Oxfam has been in operation in the DRC since 1961 primarily focusing on humanitarian projects such as provising long-term access to clean drinking water.
In recent years Oxfam has been under intense scrutiny after the Charity Commission`s claims in 2019 that it had not fully reported allegations staff working in disaster zones had sexually assalted children.
The Charity Commission had withdrawn from strictly supervising Oxfam after its execution of “significant” reforms and implemented a majority of the 100 recommendations in the wake of an inquiry.
Oxfam admitted that it was aware of the alleged incidents but was still in search of further information.
“The Charity Commission and FCDO have been notified appropriately and we will continue to keep them informed as the investigation concludes its work,” an Oxfam spokesperson added.