HALO Trust Faces Controversy Over Pricy Internal Review

The HALO Trust, a charity which works to remove land mines around the world, and was once patronized by Princess Diana and had Angelina Jolie on its board, is facing controversy for the second time in two years. This time, it’s about how much they paid two of their trustees to perform an internal review to ensure that the charity was running as efficiently as possible.

Those two trustees, Amanda Pullinger and Simon Conway, were paid a total of $183,000, as well as given lodging near the charity’s Scotland headquarters, in order to review the charity’s operations from October to May of 2014. According to the HALO Trust, the expenditure was acceptable, because having them handle the review was more efficient, and more cost effective, then hiring someone from outside the organization.

The review in question came about after the charity suspended long-time CEO Guy Willoughby over governance issues. Specifically, it became apparent that Willoughby’s compensation package of $336,000 contained money to pay for his children’s private school tuition. That’s quite a lot of money, even if you cut it down to just the actual pay, which has to be more than enough to pay for private school. Not even a real life Hogwarts could possibly cost that much.

But following the suspension of Willoughby, the Trust began their internal review, the cost of which pales in comparison to the salary Willoughby was drawing. Spending that much on an internal review doesn’t look great either though. It should prove an interesting scandal to follow, and if there is anything untoward involved, hopefully it can be resolved in a way that leaves the charity running, albeit in more efficient hands. The HALO Trust, which Jolie left to pursue other humanitarian efforts, does good work around the world, and received its fund from a number of nation states, some of which could likely use the help that the charity offers.