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Sierra Leone Business: SLRSA ordered to pay RMFA Le21bn shortfall

Under collection of revenue amounting to Le21 billion (Le 21,102,777,910.39) was identified by auditors looking into the activities of the Sierra Leone Roads Safety Authority (SLRSA). This was discovered while examining the amount remitted to Road Maintenance Fund Administration (RMFA) by SLRSA. According to Section 19 (a) of the Roads Transport Authority Act of 2007 it was less than the required amount. Analysis of the remittances for 2016 and 2017 indicated an adverse variance of more than 66%. Unaudited figures provided for the financial years 2016 and 2017 showed that RMFA received a total of Le9.3 billion (Le9,324,924,325) while they were estimated to receive Le30.4 billion (Le30,427,702,235 giving an adverse variance of Le21.1 billion (Le21,102,777,910.39.) This the audit team says is as a result of deductions as authorised by the SLRSA Act, which permits for administrative deductions were misinterpreted to cover the entire cost of the organisation including capital and project costs. “The management accepted our initial finding and recommendation, and indicated that they would engage SLRSA and other key stakeholders to resolve this matter. Furthermore, we were advised that introduction of the Treasury Single Account should address this matter” the Auditor General said. It was recommended that the management of RMFA should request from SLRSA the unpaid amount of Le21.1 billion (Le 21,102,777,910.39) with immediate effect. Also after reviewing the cheques for fuel levy charges collected by the RMFA from Oil Marketing Companies (OMC), a difference of Le 171 million (Le171,864,465.59) was identified when compared to the figures reported to the Petroleum Regulatory Agency (PRA) by the same OMC. What was reported by the oil marketing companies to have been collected and paid over to the RMFA is higher than that reported to the PRA. “The un-reconciled difference indicates the risks on the reliability of the information provided by the OMCs to both the PRA and RMFA. On the other hand, RMFA also failed to follow-up and reconcile their figures with PRA” they stated. In their management’s response, RMFA accepted the finding and the initial recommendation to commence with immediate effect reconciliation exercises with OMCs & PRA. It was recommended that the Management of RMFA and PRA should provide the Auditor General with details of their fortnightly reconciliations as soon as they receive this report.

By Zainab Iyamide Joaque

Monday April 15, 2019.

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