Judgment No. 1077
1. THE PAHO SHALL PAY THE COMPLAINANT THE SUM OF 12,000 UNITED STATES DOLLARS IN DAMAGES.
2. IT SHALL PAY HER 1,000 DOLLARS IN COSTS.
3. HER OTHER CLAIMS ARE DISMISSED.
"A decision by an international organisation to make an appointment is a discretionary one and is therefore subject only to limited review. It may be quashed only if it was taken without authority [etc]. The Tribunal will, in cases like the present, exercise its power of review with special caution, its function being not to judge the candidates on merit but to allow the Selection Committee and the executive head full responsibility for their choice."
appointment; competition; judicial review; discretion; limits
Consideration 6, summary
The Selection Committee initially recommended the appointment of the complainant. Recruitment to the post having been frozen for two years, the Committee's recommendation never reached the Director. After the freeze another selection process began without taking account of the outcome of the first, and the complainant was not selected. The Tribunal is satisfied that in view of the time that had elapsed between the two selection processes it was only reasonable to treat the first one as abortive and to start a new one.
recommendation; competition; competition cancelled; selection board
The complainant objects to the outcome of a competition which she took part in. The Tribunal finds the material selection process is tainted with two flaws: the results were not "quantified" and the candidates were not anonymous. As the evaluation process was not a fair one, the complainant is entitled to damages.
equal treatment; competition; procedural flaw; bias
PAHO Staff Regulation 4.4 gives preference to inside candidates for promotion, all other things being equal. Two editors on temporary posts were appointed after the holding of a competition. The Tribunal holds that an organisation must avoid so giving inside candidates the impression of subterfuge.
Organization rules reference: PAHO STAFF REGULATION 4.4
appointment; competition; candidate; internal candidate; priority
There was a further potential flaw in the process. Since the candidates had to write their names on the test papers, the person in charge of quantifying the results would, had she marked the papers, have been aware of their identity, and there would have been a risk that the examiner might, even involuntarily, be influenced by knowing the candidates. The process of evaluation must not only be fair, as provision 344 requires, but also be seen to be fair.
competition; candidate; flaw; selection procedure; impartiality