Applying the IPSIG Methodology to Aid in Africa
The Ujima Subukia Fund (“USF”) is unique in that it is a non-government organization operating with cutting edge transparency. Co-Founder and President Neil V. Getnick is the managing partner of Getnick & Getnick LLP, a recognized leader in the law and practice of business integrity and anti-fraud. The firm counsels clients in best corporate practices, conducts litigation to recover defrauded funds and undertakes corporate integrity monitoring. For example, the firm was selected to serve in the role of integrity monitor for the clean up of the World Trade Center site after 9/11 and was selected as the federal court-appointed independent monitor over the New York Racing Association in 2004.
In both of those instances, the firm was engaged as an Independent Private Sector Inspector General (“IPSIG”). An IPSIG is an independent, private sector firm with legal, auditing, investigative, management and loss prevention skills, employed by an organization (voluntarily or by compulsory process) to ensure compliance with relevant law and regulations, and to deter, prevent, uncover and report unethical and illegal conduct by, within and against the organization.
Getnick & Getnick LLP is now applying those IPSIG skills and methodologies to the operation of the USF. By introducing these techniques within the framework of an international non-governmental organization, Getnick & Getnick LLP hopes to usher in an era of voluntary transparency for the international aid community that will increase the effectiveness of NGOs and the amount of donor support they receive.
Getnick & Getnick LLP has devoted significant financial and personnel resources to assist in the establishment and the oversight of the USF scholarship program. In our role as integrity monitor, Getnick & Getnick LLP has sent attorneys to Subukia, Kenya, periodically to personally meet with and interview the scholarship recipients, their teachers and the headmasters for each of the recipient schools. Furthermore, Getnick & Getnick LLP has audited all of the USF documents, including but not limited to the participant applications, the school fee breakdowns, the school scholarship receipts and the USF bank account records. These steps have been taken to ensure that the highest level of integrity is maintained throughout the operation of the scholarship program.