ITUC General Council Meeting 13 January

The ITUC General Council reconvened in a virtual meeting on 13 January to consider:

  • Leadership of the ITUC for the period up to the next meeting of the Council on 11 March when it will consider the status of Luca Visentini, who is currently suspended from the post;
  • An independent external audit of all financial questions concerning the circumstances relating to the allegations and of the ITUC’s financial rules and procedures; and,
  • The establishment of a Special Commission to investigate the circumstances surrounding the allegations against Luca Visentini, including the results of the external audit, and other matters including ITUC financial rules and procedures, conduct of elections and related issues.

The Council decided that Deputy General Secretary Owen Tudor would continue to fulfil the responsibilities of General Secretary until 11 March, in close cooperation with the ITUC President, Deputy Presidents and the other two Deputy General Secretaries.

Terms of reference for the independent external audit and for the special Commission were agreed at the Council. The criteria for composition of the special Commission were also agreed. The Commission, which is expected to be composed of between 7 and 10 members, will include former international trade union leaders from each region with substantial international experience, as well as independent legal experts with knowledge of the trade union movement.

The outcome of the independent external audit will be reported to the ITUC General Council, and will also be provided to the ITUC’s elected internal auditors, who are independent of the secretariat, for their comments and to the Special Commission. The Special Commission will provide an initial report to the March General Council. It is also expected that it will continue its work concerning ITUC rules and procedures beyond that date, as well as the issue of whether there was any external influence on the ITUC’s work on Qatar. Recommendations which do not have to be considered by the General Council in March will be to a future meeting of the General Council. The work of the Special Commission will be supported by the ITUC President and Deputy Presidents, who are not employees of the ITUC. The composition of the Special Commission will be announced when it is finalised.

The implementation of whistle-blower protections for staff was agreed, and the terms of reference for the Special Commission, while focusing on the election campaign in the lead-up to the 5th ITUC World Congress in Melbourne, include in their scope previous elections.

The General Council reiterated the ITUC’s condemnation of any form of corruption, its resolve to ensure the highest standards of accountability and its determination to continue its work for working people throughout the world.