UK 'charity' Oxfam's dy head quits over prostitution scandal
London/ Brussels: The deputy chief executive of Oxfam resigned on Monday over the British charity's handling of a prostitution scandal in Haiti involving its staff members and allegations of similar behaviour in Chad.
"As programme director at the time, I am ashamed that this happened on my watch and I take full responsibility," Penny Lawrence said in a statement.
Meanwhile, the EU on Monday ordered Oxfam to explain itself over a 2011 prostitution scandal in Haiti, warning charities that the bloc would cut their funding if they breached ethical standards.
UK-based Oxfam has been left reeling by reports in the Times newspaper that senior staff hired young sex workers in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake which devastated the island.
The charity's chiefs have been summoned by the British government to explain their handling of the scandal amid accusations it covered up the episode.
The European Union said on Monday it took a "zero tolerance" approach to misconduct by NGO partners.
"We expect Oxfam to fully clarify the allegations with maximum transparency as a matter of urgency, and we're ready to review and, if needed, cease funding to any partner who is not living up to the required high ethical standards," spokeswoman Maja Kocijancic told reporters.
The EU provided Oxfam with 1.7 million euros in funding in 2011, she said.
Oxfam, which employs around 5,000 staff and has 23,000 more volunteers, has announced new measures to tackle sexual abuse cases, though Chief Executive Mark Goldring has insisted there was no cover-up in 2011.
The charity is accused of failing to warn other aid agencies about the staff involved, which allowed them to get jobs among vulnerable people in other disaster areas.
Oxfam officials were set to meet Britain's international development secretary in a bid to retain government funding amid a deepening scandal over sexual misconduct by the charity's workers in Haiti.
Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt was demanding that Oxfam show moral accountability and provide full disclosure about the case.
on Sunday, she threatened to pull public funding from Oxfam unless the charity reveals everything it knows about allegations that some of staff used prostitutes, some of whom were minors, while working in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake that devastated the country.
Oxfam has denied that it attempted to cover up the