14th July 2024

The Auditor-General’s office is asking management of Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST) to provide further details on the payment of GH¢30,442,551.00 in excess of the amount budgeted for the supply of storage tanks and pipelines.

Information available to the Daily Statesman indicates that Management of BOST contracted America Tank and Vessel Inc. (AT&V) in July 2006 to supply storage tanks and pipelines and ship same to Ghana.

Even though a total sum of US$5,129,170.05 had been spent on the project as at October 2020, the storage tanks were supplied and installed leaving the Pipelines yet to be shipped to Ghana.

The Acting Auditor-General, Johnson Akuamoah Asiedu in his report to Parliament in accordance to Section 11 of the Audit Service Act, 2000 (Act 584) charged management of BOST to justify the delays in bringing the pipeline to Ghana for installation and take immediate action to prevent further delays.

“Management approved the total payment of GH¢30,442,551.00 in excess of the amount budgeted for. We recommended to Management to justify the misapplication and further advised to desist from such act and operate within approved budgets”, the A-G further said in his report.

According to him, Management used Bulk Road Vehicles (BRVs) in conveying products from Akosombo to Buipe instead of making use of its Barges, which could have saved the company a total amount of GH¢393,253.24 and therefore asked “Management to provide justification for the non-usage of the barges.”

The Acting A-G is also not happy about BOST’s inability to recover debts amounting to GH¢446,845.00 owed by four Bulk Distribution Companies (BDCs) and urged management to ensure that all debts due the Company are promptly collected.

Better particulars required

“We noted that Management awarded a contract amounting to US$39,000,000.00 to Rolider Company in June 2015 for the construction of its Head office complex prior to approval by PPA for a Restricted Tendering in December, 2015. We recommended to Management to provide the supporting documentations and various approval letters from the appropriate approving authorities and further follow the procedures as enshrined in Section 90 of Act 663 as amended.”

“Management awarded contract amounting to US$5,129,170.05 through Restrictive Tendering method but did not seek approval from the Central Tender Review Committee (CTRC). We recommended that Management should regularise the transactions by seeking retrospective approval from the CTRC, failing which sanctions shall be applied.”

Procurement breaches

The A-G noted that procurement activities totalling GH¢242,496.45 were not part of the approved and revised procurement plan of BOST and thus recommended to Management to regularize the transactions by seeking retrospective approval from the Entity Tender Committee.

Management paid twenty-four (24) staff who were on secondment for more than a year a total amount of GH¢6,611,240.97 contrary to the Collective Bargaining Agreement of BOST. We entreated Management to justify the payment. Also, affected officers should immediately be recalled or cease payment of their salaries.

“We noted that Management paid an amount of GH¢151,987.00 covering a period of 41 months. This payment was in respect of half salary paid to an interdicted staff. We recommended to Management to take steps in bringing the matter to a close to avoid additional cost to the Company.”

The A-G is also worried that Management seconded ten staff members to unrelated institutions contrary to the Collective Bargaining Agreement of BOST and asked for a justification of that action and immediately recall the staff concerned or cease payment of their salaries.

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