Showing posts with label SIGAR. Show all posts
Showing posts with label SIGAR. Show all posts

Sunday, March 25, 2018

SIGAR Report - Review of ANA Blood Collection and Screening Procedures

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has released a report that reviews the collection and procedures for screening the blood of Afghanistan National Army personnel. SIGAR-19-33SP published in March 2018 is 14 pages long. Knowing the blood types and screening for infectious disease is critical to the sustainability of the ANA, as receiving blood that has not been correctly typed or screened may be life-threatening.

Some key points in the report:

In January 2017 the ANA stopped collecting and testing blood, or validating test results, from new recruits. The blood type of at least 9 percent of the total ANA force currently remains unconfirmed. The Afghan National Army Recruiting Command (ANAREC) did not have the necessary supplies and equipment to collect the blood. Some ANA soldiers have been killed from receiving the wrong type of blood when injured or wounded in combat. The ANA is not required to input blood type into the Afghan Human Resource Information System (AHRIMS) during the medical accessions process. projects/SIGAR-18-33-SP.pdf

Sunday, March 11, 2018

SIGAR Report - District Control

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) January 2018 Quarterly Report to the United States Congress was heavily edited by Resolute Support Headquarters which resulted in key data relating to security in Afghanistan being deleted from the report. Resolute Support and the U.S. Department of Defense took a considerable amount of 'heat' over the omission and this was quickly reversed.

A new 17-page addendum to the latest quarterly report has now been published that includes data originally missing. For the most part this addendum includes information on territorial and population control. One of the metrics used in assessing the success or failure of the Resolute Support Mission and that of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) is to measure that percentage of population under the control of the government and the amount of territory under the control of the government.

It is a little bit more complicated than that - as different criteria are used. For instance a district can be under insurgent control or influence. A district can be contested. Or a district can be under government control or influence. And it matters on whether you are measuring population or territory. Much of the Afghan population lives in district capitals, provincial capitals, major cities, and Kabul. Most of these major towns and cities are firmly under the control of the Afghan security forces. So using a percentage of the population as a measurement is probably (from the Afghan government or RS viewpoint) better than the number of districts (as many districts are in rural areas). USFOR-A and RS use a RS District  Assessment Methodology that is described in the SIGAR report.

The RS methodology has some built in faults. For instance for a district to be under insurgent influence there has to be no government or security presence in the district center. A district center is usually a walled compound with 3 to 8 buildings where the district governor (DGov), district chief of police (DCoP), and other government representatives (MRRD, MAIL, etc.) have offices. By this criteria, even if the security forces cannot venture out of the gates of the compound, the DGov (and other government ministry representatives are not present - and who determines whether they report to work or not), and the district center is resupplied by helicopter with fuel, food, ammunition, and more; the district is considered not under insurgent influence. The insurgents may roam freely throughout the district with firm control of the roads, market, and outlying areas but they still do not have district influence. A more accurate picture of district control is provided by the Long War Journal.

Learn more about district control.

Read the SIGAR addendum.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

SIGAR Quarterly Report to Congress (Jan 2018)

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has posted its Quarterly Report to Congress for January 2018. This 293-page report provides an overview of reconstruction activities in Afghanistan with updates on:

Overview and Status of Funds
Economic and Social Development

Sunday, November 5, 2017

SIGAR Quarterly Report - October 30, 2017

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) Quarterly Report to Congress dated 30 October 2017 has been published. It appears that some significant information that used to be in previous reports is no longer available. Some of the missing information includes key figures about the growth and progress of local security forces.

Of note is the diminishing numbers of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF). In 2017 the Afghan National Army (ANA) shrank by 5,000 troops while the Afghan National Police (ANP) suffered a net loss of 4,000. The decrease in numbers was attributed to combat casualties, defections to the Taliban, and desertions.

'Green on Green' attacks are up since January 2015.

News stories on the SIGAR report:

October 2017 SIGAR Report, SOF News, October 31, 2017

"Afghanistan Stares Down the Barrel of the Long Defeat", The Diplomat, November 4, 2017.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

SIGAR Report - Reconstructing the ANDSF

A recent SIGAR report provides lessons learned about the train, advise, and assist mission for the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF). The 283-page report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, published in September 2017, examines how the U.S. government (DoD, DoS, Justice Department) developed and executed security sector assistance programs for the Afghan security forces and institutions. A number of lessons learned are identified and recommendations are offered for improved performance in efforts to assist the ANDSF as well as other security sector assistance programs in future operations around the world.

The analysis by SIGAR finds that the U.S. government was not prepared to assist the Afghan army and police forces adequately. The U.S. lacked a comprehensive approach to security sector assistance and lacked a whole-of-government approach to develop a capable and self-sustaining Afghan security force. Read Reconstructing the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces: Lessons from the U.S. Experience in Afghanistan, SIGAR, September 2017.

The report is also available as an interactive online resource

Sunday, August 6, 2017

SIGAR Quarterly Report to Congress

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has issued its Quarterly Report to Congress. The report covers the period of April through June 2017. The 272-page report covers reconstruction, oversight issues, governance, security, and more.

"SIGAR Quarterly Report July 2017", SOF News, August 1, 2017.

"Wow, Afghanistan Is Getting a Lot Worse", War is Boring, August 2, 2017.

"Here's Exactly How Much the US Has Spent on the War in Afghanistan - So Far", Task and Purpose, August 1, 2017.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

SIGAR Quarterly Report to Congress - October 2016

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has released its quarterly report to Congress on October 30, 2016. Some of the topics in the 280-page report include "Afghan Women on their Progress and the Challenges That Remain", "SIGAR Oversight Activities", "Reconstruction Update", and other "Agency Oversight".

SIGAR Report on USAID's Stabilization Initiatives

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has issued a report on the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) efforts to provide stability to Afghanistan. The report says that USAID generally achieved its objectives but the agency lacked a geospatial data policy and standards affected its implementation.
"Beginning in 2011, with the drawdown of coalition troops throughout Afghanistan, USAID faced increasing challenges in overseeing its stabilization programs. To address these challenges, in March 2012, USAID awarded Management Systems International Inc. (MSI) as contract to implement the Measuring Impacts of Stabilization Initiatives (MISTI) program to monitor and evaluate eight ongoing stabilization programs costing $762 million. The agency estimated that MISTI would last 3 years and cost approximately $15 million. The contract ended in October 2015 and ultimately cost $19.3 million."
Read "USAID's Measuring Impacts of Stabilization Initiatives", SIGAR 17-10 Audit Report, October 2016. (32 pages, Adobe Acrobat PDF).

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Reports and Publications Recently Issued

SIGAR Quarterly Report. Four times a year the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction issues a report on the Afghan conflict and where are tax payer money is spent in Afghanistan. Topics in the latest report include electrifying Afghanistan, SIGAR oversight activities, reconstruction update, and other SIGAR reports. Overall, the report is (like most SIGAR reports) a bit pessimistic; unlike RS or DoD reports which are overly optimistic). But it is a good read to balance out the spin coming out of the Department of Defense or what the Afghan government media sources are spouting out. Things are not that good from a security standpoint, the economy is not faring well, young educated people are leaving in droves, and the international community and Resolute Support Headquarters still have not got a handle on accountability and oversight on how their funds are being spent by the Afghans. Read the Quarterly Report to the United States Congress, July 30, 2016.

Report on Recruitment by Armed Groups in Afghanistan. The European Asylum Support Office (EASO) published a report on the recruitment of armed groups in Afghanistan (Taliban and other insurgent factions) on September 19, 2016..

SIGAR Report on Afghanistan's High Office of Oversight (HOO). The High Office of Oversight is the topic of a special report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. The report finds that the HOO, which has broad responsibility for combating official corruption, lacks enforcement power, and was likely just 'window dressing' to satisfy the international community's desire for progress on fighting corruption. Read the report published on September 19, 2016.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Security News

SIGAR Quarterly Report. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction has issued its quarterly report to the United States Congress (dated 30 Jan 2016). The 230-page report basically says that Afghanistan is more dangerous than it was a year ago. Some of the sections are entitled "Growing an Economy in Stony Soil", "SIGAR Oversight Activities", "Reconstruction Update", and more. There is a section on status of funds, security and governance.

SIGAR - An Incapable Afghan NEB. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction has issued a report stating that the Afghan National Engineer Brigade is, despite intensive U.S. training efforts, incapable of operating independently. Read the 17-page SIGAR 16-15 Audit Report published in January 2016.

Rebuilding Afghanistan Now More Dangerous. The Taliban now controls more territory than at any time since 2001. A recent report by the Special Inspector General for Reconstruction in Afghanistan (SIGAR) notes that Afghanistan is growing more dangerous for US rebuilders. (Defense One, Jan 31, 2016).

General Campbell Testimony House. The Resolute Support commander recently (Tuesday, Feb 2) testified before the House Committee on Armed Services about the situation in Afghanistan. The general says that the effort in Afghanistan is like "building an airplane while in flight". He also said that out of 400 districts the Taliban control 8, influence 16, and that 94 districts are at risk. Hmmm. I wonder what the general thinks is 'district control'? You can watch a video posted on (2 1/2 hours).

Just "8 More Years". According to General Campbell, Afghanistan should be able to fund its own security costs by 2024. Currently NATO spends about $5.1 billion annually on the Afghan security forces. Read "It'll be 2024 before Afghanistan can fully fund its military, U.S. general says", Army Times, February 2, 2016.

Insurgency in the North. In the last few months of 2015 the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces (ANDSF) have conducted a series of offensive to secure the surrounding countryside around Kunduz City; however, several districts are still controlled by the Taliban. Read more in "The 2016 Insurgency in the North: Beyond Kunduz city - lessons (not taken) from the Taleban takeover", Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN), January 30, 2016.

U.S. Drones attacks ISIS. "Authorities in Afghanistan said Saturday that national security forces and U.S. drone strikes have jointly killed at least 28 Islamic State (IS) fighters in a restive eastern region bordering Pakistan". (Voice of America, Feb 6, 2016).

MoI Acknowledges Problems. The Ministry of Interior (MoI) on Saturday (Feb 6th) acknowledged that the Afghan security forces have been faced with certain challenges in their struggle against militants on the battlefields. The Taliban have really stepped up their effort during the winter fighting season and the Afghan security forces would appear to be on their heels in a defensive posture. Offensive operations have been telegraphed to the enemy thereby limiting their effectiveness. Military commentators are criticizing ". . . the government for a lack of effective management of the war and for failing to draw up a working strategy to tackle the militants." (Tolo News, Feb 6, 2016).

Taleban In-Fighting. Lot's of fighting among different factions of the Taleban since this past summer has resulted in as many as 500 Taleban fighters killed.

Taliban Kill 10 Year Old Boy. The Afghan government declared Wasil Ahmad - a ten year old - a hero for opposing the Taliban. Then the Taliban killed him with two bullets to the head. He had left the militia and returned to school - the 4th grade. (The New York Times, Feb 2, 2016).

Afghan 3/215th Corps KIA. The commander of the third brigade of 215th Corps in Helmand province, Gen Ata Mir Aagah, was killed in a road side blast in Greshk district on Monday, Feb 1st. (Khaama Press, Feb 2, 2016).

Ten Civilians Killed. On Monday, ten civilians were killed in a suicide bombing when an insurgent blew himself up after joining a line of people. The people killed were mostly new police recruits. There were an estimated 28 people injured. The attack took place in PD 3 at the police station.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

TFBSO and Expensive Kabul Villas

It seems that the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) wants all non-military personnel to have lousy living conditions comparable to the U.S. military. Anyone who has spent anytime in Afghanistan knows the disparity in living conditions between our NATO allies and partners and the U.S. military. (For instance, in 2014, 13 years after the start of the war the U.S. forces on Camp Marmel, Mazar-e-Sharif were still living in tents while the Europeans lived in concrete barracks with tiled floors, bathrooms, and Internet.) Or compare the living conditions of the U.S. military with USAID or State Department at Camp RS in Kabul! SIGARs latest target is the Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO) and their desire for the comforts of life. Read a letter from SIGAR to SEC DEF Carter pointing out the millions of dollars spent by TFBSO providing the nicer things that help get you through a year in Afghanistan for their staff members. (SIGAR, Nov 25, 2015). (NOTE TO SELF: I could have lived a lot better during my five years in Afghanistan if I worked for TFBSO!).

Sunday, November 15, 2015

TFBSO and Wasting Our Money

Just a few weeks back the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) issued a report detailing the spending of $43 million on a natural gas filling station in Afghanistan that should have cost about $500 thousand. The gas station was the brainchild of the Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO) - a task force focused on economic development in US war zones like Afghanistan and Iraq. During its investigation the Defense Department gave SIGAR a huge run-around. Now there are other TFBSO issues that are currently under investigation but the 'run-around game' is still being played by DoD. The Senate Judiciary Committee is not amused and has issued a letter asking DoD to comply with the requests of SIGAR. Read more in "The Pentagon's Afghan 'Slush Fund' Will Now Have to Answer to Angry Lawmakers", by Tim Fernholz, Defense One, November 11, 2015. Learn more about TFBSO -

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Afghan War News Snippets

$43 Million Gas Station Built by DoD in Afghanistan. The Task Force for Stability and Business Operations (TFBSO) built a compressed natural gas (CNG) automobile filling station in Sheberghan, Afghanistan (capital city of Jowzjan province). A similar CNG station in Pakistan costs about $500 thousand. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) wants the DoD to explain the price differential - but DoD says they don't have an explanation. Hmmmm. Read the SIGAR report at the following link.

6 Costly Failures. Joe Perticone tells us about six very expensive projects that didn't quite work out in our efforts to rebuild Afghanistan. (Independent Journal, Nov 4, 2015).

Earthquake Update. Afghanistan was recently hit by a major earthquake - affecting Badakhshan, Nangarhar, Baghlan, and Kunar provinces. Read an update on the Afghanistan earthquake by Humanitarian Response on November 3, 2015. See report by International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies - "Concern mounts as winter sets in across quake-affected regions".

Louie Palu's Kandahar Journals. Photojournalist Louie Palu spent five years covering the war in Afghanistan from 2006 to 2010. A new documentary film entitled Kandahar Journals will premier in November 2015. Photos from the film are available for viewing here. (The Atlantic, Nov 3, 2015).

Tevor Coult's First into Sangin. A book detailing the story of a forgotten platoon and band of men who were the first British Soldiers to occupy 'the House' in Sangin District at the start of the Herrick Campaign. Read a PR release on the book here.

A "Fobbit" Writes about Life on a FOB. Some Soldiers experienced combat on a daily basis in Afghansitan; some 'not so much'. Read "How Forward Operating Bases Created the Illusion of War in Iraq and Afghanistan", The Angry Staff Officer, November 3, 2015.

Solar Power & Afghan Electricity Crisis. Some folks are saying that solar power in Afghanistan can help rescue the economic crisis and electric power shortage. Read more in "Can Solar Power Make Light Work of Afghanistan's Electricity Crisis?", Equal Times, November 5, 2015.

Cdr at Kerala Massacre Arrested. Dutch authorities have arrested the commander of an elite government (444) Army unit of the Afghan communist regime that committed a horrendous massacre of Afghan civilians in Kunar province in April 1979 (over 36 years ago). Read more in a report by the Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN).

Iran, Afghan Refugees, and Syria. Iran, with the aim of helping its ally - the Syrian regime - is sending Afghan refugees to fight in the conflict. Read more in "Afghan refugees in Iran being sent to fight and die for Assad in Syria", The Guardian, November 5, 2015.

Finland Reviews Afghan Asylum Claims. Finland has announced that it has suspended its decision-making process for Afghan Asylum claims due to an ongoing assessment of the security situation in the country. (Reuters, Nov 4, 2015).

German Interpreter Tells his Story. An interpreter worked for the German military in Afghanistan until the Taliban threatened his life. He managed to leave for Germany but his family had to stay behind. Read "Afghan interpreter torn between worlds", Deutsche Welle, November 5, 2015.

Deployed Troops and Beer Drinking. Times have changed and so has the Army. Women in combat units, gays allowed to serve openly, and . . . sadly . . . long tours in a combat zone with no beer. It wasn't always that way and some of the older contractors serving on bases like Bagram probably remember finer days when "Soldiers Worked Hard and Played Hard". I, for one, am disappointed in the senior leadership of today's Army in regards to the non-drinking policy. I am not the only one - Jim Webb, Vietnam Vet and one-time candidate for President, has chided the U.S. military on its non-drinking policy. Read more about the good old days in "Flat Tops: Canned Beer and Vietnam", War on the Rocks, October 30, 2015.

MREs to Get Better? The Meal Ready to Eat or MRE (sometimes called Meals Rarely Edible) has been around for over 35 years. The next generation of meals is being developed at the Natick Research Center outside of Boston, Massachusetts (presumably there are smart people in the Boston area who have superior culinary abilities). Pizza is on the way! (10 News Tampa Bay, Nov 2, 2015).

Buying More Counterfire Radars. The Army is buying more AN/TPQ-53 counterfire target acquisition radars from Lockheed Martin. (C4ISR & Networks, Oct 26, 2015).

Contractor Firms Benefit from Decision to Stay. President Obama's recent decision to keep the level of troops constant for the new year or two will certainly benefit contracting firms. (AllGov, Nov 2, 2015).

Canadian Defence Minister Afghan Vet. The new Defence Minister has Afghan war time experience and brings a cultural twist to the position. Read "New Defence Minister Harjit Singh Sajjan proved mettle in Afghanistan", The Globe and Mail, November 5, 2015.

Family Planning. Clerics face death threats for promoting family planning in a country where one in 50 women dies of causes related to pregnancy. Read more "Condoms and conflict: imams defy Taliban to spread contraception", The Guardian, November 4, 2015.

"Cabal of Corruption at Bagram Air Base". A story of drugs, prostitutes, and illegal activities provides a side of Bagram that many never see. Learn more about the underground life at BAF. (Courthouse News Service, 3 Nov 2015).

"Black Widows" Arrive at Bagram. Airmen of the 421st Fighter Squadron (F-16s) have arrived at Bagram Airfield to support Operation Freedom's Sentinel and NATO's Resolute Support mission. Upon completion of this deployment the squadron will shift to the new J-35 jet aircraft. Ouch! (U.S. Air Force, Nov 2, 2015).

Advising - It's a Cultural Thing. A senior intelligence officer and air intelligence advisor for the 438th Expeditionary Advisory Group relates his experiences to us during his time from October 2013 to December 2014 working as a air advisor to the Afghan Air Force (AAF). Read (and listen) to Lt. Col. James Fielder in "Cultural Gaps Cause Problems in U.S.-Afghan Military Ops", Iowa Public Radio, November 3, 2015.

AAF Lacking C-130 Flight Engineers. It takes more than 18 months to train up a C-130 flight engineer. Currently the AAF has four C-130s but only one flight engineer. Looks like we put the cart (airplanes) before the horse (personnel). Read more in "Lack of trained staff means long hours for Afghan air force engineer", Reuters, November 4, 2015.

Drug War in Afghanistan. The State Department is still without a new plan to fight drug trafficking in Afghanistan. Although successfully combating opium could be a key to victory in Afghanistan the U.S. is still without a strategy.(U.S. News & World Report, Oct 27, 2015).

Sunday, November 1, 2015

SIGAR - Quarterly Report on Afghanistan

The Quarterly Report to the United States Congress by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has been published. The 256-page report dated 30 October 2015 covers a variety of topics about Afghanistan in great detail and provides a more realistic account of the current security, development, economic, status of funds, and political situation in Afghanistan than most other government and military reports. Part of the report is an extensive interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. There are also numerous appendices on a variety of issues and topics as well as many endnotes and a glossary.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

SIGAR Audit - $ for Refugees Wasted

ANCOP provides clothing to refugee children
in refugee camp in Kabul, Afghanistan.
 Photo by Senior Airman Christopher Hatch,
 NTM-A DVIDS, July 2011.
The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) published an audit on September 3, 2015. about U.S. assistance intended to support Afghan refugees and returnees. Some of its findings include amount of money spent ($950 million), reliance on Pakistani and Iranian governments (both very trustworthy?) to identify the number of Afghan refugees, weaknesses in UNHCR and Pakistani government processes that limit the ability to obtain accurate data, the Afghan governments' limited progress in implementing its refugee strategy, and the role the corruption and limited ministerial capacity plays in the refugee situation. Overall the audit seems to point to yet another example of lots of money intended for a good purpose getting siphoned off by corrupt Afghan officials, lack of ministerial capacity, and improper oversight by U.S. officials. But, after all, in the overall scheme of all things Afghanistan $1 billion is just a drop in the bucket! Read Afghan Refugees and Returnees: Corruption and Lack of Afghan Ministerial Capacity Have Prevented Implementation of a Long-Term Refugee Strategy, SIGAR 15-83 Audit Report, August 2015.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

SIGAR Quarterly Report - July 2015

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has released its July 2015 Quarterly Report to Congress. Some key findings in the report:

- Since 2002, Congress has appropriated nearly $109 billion for Afghanistan reconstruction and of that amount almost $12 billion remains to be spent.
- The U.S. has provided $8.2 billion for counternarctics efforts in Afghanistan, and the country is the global leader in illicit opium cultivation and production.
- After recent meetings with senior Afghan officials, SIGAR remains unconvinced that either USAID or the Afghan ministries are able to accurately account for the investments in health and education made by the United States and our allies.
- The report suggests that placing conditions on international assistance to Afghanistan can help achieve its purposes of thwarting corruption, making the country capable of standing on its own, and providing accountability for donor nation funds.


Sunday, July 26, 2015

Wasteful Spending on Warehouse in Kandahar

The U.S. military is once again getting a black eye on wasteful spending in Afghanistan. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) is reporting that the U.S. government spent $14.7 million to construct a warehouse in Kandahar, Afghanistan that was never used. The U.S. Army started to build the warehouse facility for the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) in 2009 but it was never completed on time. Although the project was to be completed by mid-2011 it fell behind schedule. Although it was finished the warehouse was never used. The lengthy construction delays resulted in the DLA in citing the contractor for unsatisfactory performance and lack of work progress. The cost to construct the facility continued to increase even after the U.S. Army, USACE, and DLA knew the facility was no longer needed. It seems the DLA could not explain why the project was not terminated. The U.S. Army did not take any action to prevent more than $400,000 in cost increases which occurred after the decision was made that the DLA would not be using the facility - consequently the funds are likely to have been wasted. You can read SIGAR's report at the following link - SIGAR 15-74 Inspection Report and read a news article by The Washington Post (Jul 20, 2015) on this topic.

Friday, May 1, 2015

SIGAR Quarterly Report on Afghanistan

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) has issued its Quarterly Report to Congress (April 30, 2015). This 259 page report covers almost all aspects of the U.S. activities in Afghanistan and provides a summary of SIGAR's oversight work. The report identifies problems and provides assessments in the effort to build the Afghan security forces, improve governance, and facilitate economic and social development.

SIGAR Report - ANA Payroll

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction has published a report entitled "Afghan National Army: Millions of Dollars at Risk Due to Minimal Oversight of Personnel and Payroll Data", SIGAR 15-54 Audit Report, April 2015. This report was sent to Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, General Lloyd Austin (Cdr CENTCOM), and General John Campbell (Cdr Resolute Support). The report provides four recommendations to include a daily sign in roster for the ANA with identification numbers, that the MoD use electronic means to track attendance and payroll records above the Corps by 2017, that they develop an MoD verification methodology, and develop written procedures for verifying ANA personnel and payroll data. Presumably these steps will provide oversight on where our money is going, reduce the amount of "ghost soldiers" who are getting paid, and eliminate some of the rampart corruption taking place within the senior ANA ranks. Sounds like the Resolute Support advisors working in Essential Function 1 and Essential Function 4 have their work cut out for them. The report finds that:
"Despite 13 years and billions of dollars in salary assistance to the Afghan government for the ANA, there is still no assurance that personnel and payroll data are accurate. Although the U.S. and Afghan governments have been working to develop effective ANA personnel and payroll processes, those processes continue to exhibit extensive internal control deficiencies".
"SIGAR found that Essential Function 4 (and prior to January 2015, CSTC-A), relies on the MOD and ANA to collect and accurately report ANA personnel and payroll data. However, the ANA's process for collecting unit-level attendance data, upon which all ANA personnel and payroll data is based, has limited oversight and weak controls, and is not consistently applied across ANA locations"

Thursday, April 30, 2015

SIGAR Testimony on Afghanistan Reconstruction

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) testified before a committee of the U.S. House of Representatives on Afghan reconstruction programs. A prepared statement is posted on SIGAR's website - "Why ANSF Numbers Matter; Inaccurate and Unreliable Data, and Limited Oversight of On-Budget Assistance Put Millions of U.S. Taxpayer Dollars at Risk", Statement by John F. Sopko, April 29, 2015.

Listen to a webcast of the hearing: