Open letter to World Bank President Malpass on selection of the next CAO Vice President

Open letter to World Bank President Malpass on selection of the next CAO Vice President

Dear President Malpass, 

We, the undersigned organizations, write with regards to the selection of the next Compliance Advisor Ombudsman (CAO) Vice President. 

As civil society organizations working to support people affected by IFC and MIGA projects around the world, we appreciate your commitment to ensure that the CAO is a robust, responsive and independent accountability mechanism that responds to community grievances, as outlined in your letter to US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in March 2020. 

We also appreciate your commitment to a transparent and inclusive selection process for the new CAO Vice President. 

As we have advocated for years, the credibility of the CAO as an independent accountability mechanism rests heavily on the head of the office. This is particularly true when the new Vice President will take up this job in the middle of a critical reform process. 

Over the past 20 years, the CAO has earned the trust and respect of its stakeholders through its impartial and effective handling of dispute resolution processes and its credible investigations of complaints from communities affected by IFC and MIGA-supported projects. As the World Bank Group considers the important recommendations of the External Review to further strengthen IFC and MIGA’s accountability framework, it is vital that the next CAO Vice President is able to maintain this trust. 

Therefore, as you consider your recommendation to the Board of Directors for this appointment, we urge you to prioritize candidates who have a strong reputation for independence and a demonstrated commitment to the CAO’s accountability mandate. The new CAO Vice President should be someone who has proven experience addressing concerns raised by communities about the impacts of development projects and improving social and environmental outcomes on the ground. 

We also urge you to consider the importance of diversity in this appointment. You have publicly committed to tackling injustices, racism, and inequality within the World Bank Group and around the world. The appointment of the CAO Vice President is an important part of this commitment. Selecting as the next CAO Vice President a professional from the global south with a demonstrated commitment to environmental and social accountability will send a strong message – a message that the World Bank Group values diversity at the highest level. 


Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL) (International) 

Interamerican Association for Environmental Defense (International) 

Gender Action (Washington, DC-based/global focus) 

Arab Watch Coalition (USA) 

ALTSEAN-Burma (Burma/Myanmar and Southeast Asia) 

Equitable Cambodia (Cambodia) 

Rivers without Boundaries Coalition -Mongolia (Mongolia) 

Centre for Human Rights and Development (Mongolia) 

Mongolian Women’s Employment Support Federation (Mongolia) 

Al-Haq (Palestine) 

Sayanaa Well-Being Association (Bayanzurkh district) 

Steps Without Borders NGO (Mongolia) 

Urgewald e.V. (Germany) 

Recourse (Netherlands) 

Witness Radio – Uganda (Uganda – East Africa) 

Both ENDS (Netherlands) 

International Rivers (USA) 

Coalition des Organisations de la Société Civile pour le Suivi des Réformes et de l’Action Publique (CORAP) (DRC) 

Inclusive Development International (USA) 

International Accountability Project (IAP) (Global) 

Centre de Commerce International pour le Développement (ONG – CECIDE) (République de Guinée) 

LGBT Centre (Mongolia) 

Oxfam (Global) 

Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO) (Netherlands) 

Crude Accountability (USA) 

Global Rights (Nigeria) 

Green Advocates International (Liberia) 

Psychological Responsiveness NGO (Mongolia) 

Planet Wheeler Foundation (Australia) 

Human Rights Centre for Citizens (Mongolia) 

Association pour le Développement Rural et l’Entraide Mutuelle de Guinée (ADREMGUI) (République de Guinée) 

Comisión Colombiana de Juristas (Colombia) 

Universal Rights and Development NGO (Mongolia) 

Accountability Counsel (USA) 

Arab Watch Regional Coalition (MENA) 

Social Justice Connection (Canada) 

Buliisa Initiative for Rural Development Organisation (BIRUDO) (Uganda) 

MiningWatch Canada (Canada) 

Global Social Justice Program IPD (Global) 

Rural Area Development Programme (RADP) (Nepal) 

The Bretton Woods Project (United Kingdom) 

CEE Bankwatch Network (Europe) 

Gestos (soropositividade, comunicação, gênero) (Brazil) 

Instituto de Participación y Desarrollo INPADE (Argentina) 

Foro Ciudadano de Participación por la Justicia y los Derechos Humanos (Argentina) 

Centre for Financial Accountability (India) 

Community Empowerment and Social Justice Network (CEMSOJ) (Nepal) 

International Campaign for the Rohingya (Washington, DC – USA) 

Heartland Initiative, Inc. (USA) 

Abibinsroma Foundation (Ghana) 

Bank Information Center (USA) 

California State University, Fresno (USA) 

Human Rights Law Centre (Australia) 

Centre for Applied Legal Studies, University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa) 

Rights and Accountability in Development (RAID) (UK) 

Liberty Shared (Asia Pacific) 


Consumer NGO (Mongolia) 

Eco Industrialization Innovation Fund (Mongolia) 

ARTICLE 19 (Global) 

Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns (Global) 

Earthworks (USA)

The letter is available for download here


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