For the financial years of 2015 and 2016, the government of Sierra Leone lost the sum of Le 1.06 billion and Le 536 million respectively due to mismanagement by Sierratel which is the government owned telecommunications operator in the country.
As stated in the 2017 Audit Report, invoices for fuel raised by Matrix and paid for by Sierratel were overpriced.
Payment for the consumption of the said fuel was made and incorporated into contract by Matrix and Sierratel, and payments were made on the basis of the consumption rate of individual generator.
However, proper monitoring on the use of the allocated fuel was ignored by management (Sierratel) as they only monitored the performance of the sites from their system.
According to the report, in places like Freetown and Makeni, even though the sites were connected to the various substations (grid), the amounts charged on the invoices were extraordinarily high and did not reflect the usual moderate amount incurred when the sites are powered by the grid.
Although some substations usually take months without uninterrupted power supply, invoices were made for the procurement of fuel which was not used for the procurement as made.
The AG’s report is obvious of the fact that under reported fuel allocated the Sierratel management to headquarters amounting to the sum of Le 15 million and Le 12 million for the year 2015 and 2016 respectively might have been misused as it was not accounted for.
As this issue (fuel allocation) remains unresolved, the Director General (Sierratel) has been required to provide detailed explanation for the inconsistencies in the fuel records.