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12 April 2007

Is this the face that launched a thousand ships, and received a compensation package worth U$193,590 ?

Shaha Riza, external affairs manager, MENA,
World Bank, at Middle East and North Africa
Region Press Conference on 11 April 2003.
These photographs are in the public domain.
They are free to use for publication purposes.

Check one:

[ ] Much hotter than Monica Lewinsky

[ ] Yawn

If a War Crimes Tribunal ever rounds up the Top Six frothing psychos from the Bush administration who cooked up the Iraq War, Paul Wolfowitz will get a seat in the van. Wolfowitz was Deputy Secretary of Defense from 2001-2005, serving under Donald Rumsfeld. For his reward, Bush successfully pushed to make him the president of the World Bank.

Look ... what's the point of being one of the most powerful guys on Planet Earth if you can't pick up the phone and get your sweetie-pie a huge promotion? (By one account, Riza earns more than Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.)

Wolfowitz and Sara, the mother of his two daughters and one son, divorced in 2002, so Wolfowitz is free to date and make out at embassy parties.

Is the g/f of the president of the World Bank supposed to drive herself around in a P.T. Cruiser? Get real.


The Associated Press
(pickup in Washington Post, DC USA)
Thursday 12 April 2007

Wolfowitz Sorry
for Hiring 'Mistake'

by Jeanine Aversa

WASHINGTON -- World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz acknowledged Thursday that he erred in helping a close female friend get transferred to a high-paying job. "I made a mistake for which I am sorry," he said.

The growing controversy has overshadowed major development meetings this weekend and is raising fresh questions about whether Wolfowitz will stay on the job.

At issue is the generous compensation of a bank employee, Shaha Riza, who has dated Wolfowitz. She was given an assignment at the State Department in September 2005, shortly after he became bank president.

"In hindsight I wish I had trusted my original instincts and kept myself out of the negotiations," Wolfowitz said.

He said he met Thursday morning with the World Bank's board and that members were looking into the matter. He declined to discuss what actions, if any, the board could take.

"I proposed to the board that they establish some mechanism to judge whether the agreement reached was a reasonable outcome," he said, referring to Riza's transfer. "I will accept any remedies they propose."

Wolfowitz dodged a question about whether he would resign over the flap.

"I take full responsibility for the details. I did not attempt to hide my actions nor make anyone else responsible," he said.

A World Bank spokeswoman would not comment on what range of options the board could consider and did not know when the board would finish its deliberations on the matter.

The Government Accountability Project, a watchdog group, estimated Riza's salary at U$193,590 as a result of the job transfer and pay raises. The group says she was paid by the World Bank and remains on the bank's payroll. The situation has brought accusations of favoritism from the bank's staff association.

Riza had worked as a communications adviser in the bank's Middle East Department before she took the assignment outside the bank. Rules bar employees from supervising anyone with whom they had a personal relationship.

The State Department says she left in September 2006 and now works for Foundation for the Future, an international organization that gets some money from the department.

The World Bank would not comment on Riza's compensation, citing confidentiality concerns.

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1 comment:

Bro Robin said...

What the hell was he thinking? If he's gonna do a favor for someone he could at least make sure she's somewhat attractive!