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As 2018 Audit Report Exposes ‘New Direction’

As 2018 Audit Report Exposes ‘New Direction’


Sierra Leone’s Auditor General, Mrs. Lara Taylor-Pearce has released the Audited Report on the Public Accounts of Sierra Leone (commonly called Auditor General’s Report) for the year ended 31st December 2018.

The report which contains 389 pages has revealed earth-shattering information that a whopping sum of Le257,100,000,000.00 (over 257 billion Leones) was put in to suspect shady deals entered into by Government whilst Cash Losses of Le140,994,901,568.00 (almost 141 Billion Leones) have been uncovered and reported on; all of this found within just the Year 2018 Report of the Auditor General.

With the startling revelations of brazen theft of public funds and rampant corruption that marred MDAs in just under eight months under the watchful eyes of the Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) government as presented in the 2018 Audit Report tabled in parliament recently, majority of Sierra Leoneans at home and abroad are of the view that the SLPP government which has been presenting its officials as ‘saints’ by labeling members of the erstwhile APC regime as ‘ayampis’ are in fact, far worse than the APC.

The startling information has seen citizens describe the current SLPP-led regime of H.E. President Bio as a gang of “Chief Ayampis” – more deft in promoting corruption and mismanaging public funds and far worse that their erstwhile colleagues in the APC.

It can be recalled that the erstwhile government of APC/former President Koroma had been described by current President, H.E. Bio as being “Ayampis”. An ‘ayampi’ is a reprobate human being who behaves like a filthy sewer rat that steals shamelessly.

President Bio had called APC to be Ayampis because previous Audit Reports had shown a high amount as sum of Le37 billion listed as cash losses. With Le141 billion now being the cash losses reported inside the 2018 Audit Report, the sharp increase has caused the current SLPP regime to be termed as being “Chief Ayampis”.

“We also observed several significant lapses in the procurement of goods, works and services which amounted to Le257.1 billion. This might have been due to a lack of commitment on the part of MDAs to ensure compliance with rules and legislation governing the procurement process. This practice does not ensure transparency in the procurement process,” wrote Madam Taylor Pearce about the deals that were suspect.

Madam Lara Taylor-Pearce, the Auditor General, submitted the Report to Parliament on Monday 9th December 2019. However, it was not tabled in Parliament until Wednesday 18thDecember 2019.

The 389 pages report makes very interesting reading.

Madam Taylor Pearce also stated: “This (2018) year’s report, similar to last year’s (2017), shows an improvement on issues such as; control over the preparation of financial and performance reports; improved review and monitoring of compliance with legislation; better records management system and better controls over daily and monthly processing and cash management practices.”

However, the bad news can be found when one goes further into the Report and the general public is informed by the Auditor General that in her Year 2018 Report, the Government entered into suspect deals of over 257 billion Leones plus an additional report that there were “Cash Losses” amounting to an unprecedented 140.995 billion Leones.

Such cash losses as happened in the Year 2018 Report is shocking to many citizens who have reached out to express their concerns and disappoint.

The exact amount under issue is Le140,994,901,568.00 which is missing and/or was not accounted for in the Report for the Year 2018. It is a hugely devastating blow to the government of President Bio which came into office priding itself on transparency and stopping such losses.

To make matters even worse, according to Madam Taylor Pearce, these losses of almost 141 billion Leones in the Report for the Year 2018, “do not include cash irregularity from our embassies and our other diplomatic missions overseas”.

She has listed the breakdown of the almost 141 billion Leones in 2018 in a Table of Summary of Cash Losses (Table1.1) on Page XII of her 389-paged Audit Report.

The table itself shows all areas of Sierra Leone Government where huge sums of ostensible cash got lost.

By Ibrahim Alusine Kamara

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