The Gambia Ports Authority announced it has launched an Investigations into the alleged corruption scandal involving some members of its rating unit accused of duplicating payment receipts resulting in the loss of millions of dalasi to the state.
The local online media, WhatsOn Gambia, reported on Thursday that Some of the staff at the Rating Unit under the Traffic, Operations, and Logistics Department of the Gambia Ports Authority were stealing D4million every week on fake receipts.
The Gambia Ports Authority late Friday night issued a press statement saying the authority has launched an investigation by constituting a three-member committee to investigate the serious allegations.
” The GPA Management expresses concern over the trending allegation making rounds on social media that allegedly involved certain staff at the Rating Unit, who are said to have duplicated payment receipts resulting in a loss of revenue,” the statement said.
” We wish to inform members of the public that whistleblower information raised an issue about signals of the likelihood of leakages. Subsequently, the matter was raised and discussed at a Management meeting held on Monday 28th February 2022. Immediately, precisely on Tuesday 1st March 2022, a memo was issued constituting a three-member committee, excluding the affected Department, to investigate the drop inshore handling revenue covering from 2020 and 2021 and report back on Wednesday 16th March 2022.
Apparently, on Thursday 3rd March, an alleged ‘multi-million dalasi scandal’ broke on What’s On the Gambia indicting the Authority. This remains an allegation until proven by the outcome of the investigation. However, four staff suspected of the allegation have been interdicted pending the investigation outcome.”
Meanwhile, it is instructive for the public to know that the GPA Management has since early 2021 stopped all cash collection at the Ports and all importers have been paying at the Bank (GT Bank). Further to that, arrangements are underway to have the Bank produce the Delivery Order (DO), which is the source document. This is being discussed with the shipping agencies who normally authorize releases on the DO before payments are made. The Port digitalization project also envisages online payments to eliminate all associated risks.”
” The Management assures the general public of its resolve to get to the bottom of the allegations swiftly and then take the next appropriate steps.”
This is the latest public corruption scandal to rock the country following last month’s bribery scandal involving top officials of the Gambia’s Reserve Bank.