In an article posted on Malacañang’s Official Gazette, Heidi Mendoza on Tuesday October 13 was unanimously approved by the UN body to take on the position as Chief of the UN Internal Oversight Office. She will be the first Filipino ever to hold that important position.
Assuming the role of UN’s Under-Secretary General for Internal Oversight, Mendoza will be responsible over the resources and staff of the organization through internal audit, monitoring, inspection, evaluation and investigation services. She is expected to start her term beginning November 15 2015 and will have a 5-year fixed term without renewal.
Philippines’ permanent representative to the UN Ambassador Lourdes Yparraguirre shared great honor for the Philippines following the appointment of Ms. Mendoza. She thanked the regional groups of UN for their endorsement and affirmation of Mendoza’s appointment.
“It is a great honor for the Philippines that a highly-qualified woman from the developing world was chosen to serve in a senior position in the United Nations.” She added that Commissioner Mendoza’s “qualifications and wealth of experience, coupled with her commitment to excellence and integrity, make her a wise choice for the job. Her qualifications are crucial at this juncture in the history of the UN which is celebrating its 70th anniversary, moving forward with an ambitious 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and pursuing a platform of reforms in various fields of UN work.”
Meanwhile, Foreign Affair Secretary Albert Del Rosario also louds Mendoza’s appointment saying “the appointment of Ms. Heidi Mendoza as UN Under-Secretary-General of an important office that aims to be an agent of change to promote responsible, accountable, and transparent administration of UN resources, is a true testament of her skills and integrity as a public accountant.”
Before climbing up the ladder of COA, Heidi Mendoza started as an ordinary COA auditor who later became expert auditor in fraud investigations of government transactions.
She became controversial when she came out in public detailing her findings on the anomalies inside the military. That is when she caught the attention of people because of her courage and determination to speak the truth amidst threats and coercion. She was instrumental in exposing the anomalous plea bargain deal between the Ombudsman and General Carlos Garcia.
She was also instrumental in the impeachment trial against ex-Chief Justice Renato Corona as she became an expert witness who helped Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales in analyzing the dollar account of Corona. Heidi Mendoza was also the thorn in the throat of Binay’s because she was the one who audited and exposed the anomalies against former Makati Mayor Elenita Binay regarding the over priced equipment in Ospital ng Makati.
Her courage and determination to fight and expose corruption in the government prompted Pres. Noynoy Aquino to appoint her as one of the commissioners of COA in 2011 which was hailed by different groups as a good decision.
Heidi Mendoza acted as OCI chairperson of the Commission on Audit after the retirement of Grace Pulido-Tan in February before the appointment of current COA Chief Michael Aguinaldo.
Congratulations Ms. Heidi Mendoza on your appointment. It’s our pride that a Filipino will now hold such important office in the UN.