US Military Steps up Oversight of Fuel Purchases
KABUL -The US military on Tuesday said it had increased its oversight of Afghan National Army fuel purchases by improving processes, procedures and systems to bolster accountability. With the Afghan Ministry of Defence taking responsibility for managing fuel for its forces, the US military identified transparency and accountability as top priorities.
The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) completed an audit of Afghan army controls over fuel to prevent fraud, waste and abuse in January 2013. SIGAR’s final report listed six recommendations to improve controls over funding, accounting for fuel and the MoD’s ability to manage purchase, delivery, storage and usage by the Afghan army.
In a statement, the military said it had implemented five of the six recommendations floated by SIGAR. In conjunction with MoD leadership, the US forces initiated transition, accountability and fund transfers.
It said transition would occur in a phased approach throughout 2013- 2014, with USFOR-A transferring one-third of all fuel funding and responsibilities to the MoD this year and the remaining two-thirds in 2014, based on the management and accountability proficiency of MoD.
Monthly audits will be conducted to ensure the MoD can account for funding and consumption. The USFOR-A command has cut the number of delivery sites by 60 percent, which reduces the number of delivery orders while simultaneously transferring all fuel through major logistic hubs. “While reporting over 60 allegations of theft for investigation this year, the command implemented new procedures to reduce the opportunities for corruption,” the statement added.
By identifying, investigating and resolving differences between quantities of fuel ordered and quantities delivered, these procedures strengthen fuel accountability in seven vulnerable areas along the supply chain. (PAN)