UNESCO has rescinded its prestigious education prize and severed ties with Development Aid from People to People (DAPP) Malawi, after UNICEF and the UK’s Department for International Development both cut off funding to the organisation following allegations of fraud.
DAPP Malawi has operated U.S. foreign aid projects in that country for Planet Aid, a Massachusetts nonprofit, which since 2004 has received $133 million in grants from the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.
DAPP Malawi country director Lisbeth Thomsen, pictured at left, rejected the allegations.
Since 2001, however, Danish public prosecutors have tied DAPP and Planet Aid to an alleged cult called the Tvind Teachers Group. Five leaders of the group, including founder Mogens Amdi Petersen, are Interpol fugitives wanted in their native Denmark in connection with a multimillion-dollar tax-fraud and embezzlement scheme.
Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting has been doing a superb job of bringing this story to a wider audience since last year. But for well over a decade, we at Tvind Alert have reported that DAPP Malawi and other DAPPs in southern Africa are covertly run by Tvind’s controlling body, the Teachers Group, which stands accused of siphoning off millions of dollars donated by government, corporate and philanthropic sources, and passing the funds into its own secret offshore accounts.
Read the full story by Reveal, here.