Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
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Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

Inspection of the Canadian Embassy Kinshasa

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June 1 - 5, 2009

Table of Contents

Inspection Scope and Objectives

The scope of the Inspection included a review of Mission Management and the Political Economic, International Business Development, Consular and Administration programs. The inspection objectives were to:

  • Assess management controls and systems, procedures and activities that make up the programs;
  • Determine the extent of compliance with legislation, regulations and operating policies;
  • Assess the reliability and adequacy of information available for decision-making and accountability purposes;
  • Ensure resources are judiciously used and that the Department is receiving value-for-money; and,
  • Make recommendations, where warranted, to improve the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of programs.

The focus and extent of on-site work was based on an assessment of materiality and related risk. This was done through communication with Headquarters (HQ) bureaux, including briefings by line management and the functional bureaux, review of relevant HQ and Mission documentation, past audit findings, and an analysis of recurring trends and systemic issues.

During the Inspection, inspection issues and lines of enquiry were further refined from information gathered through interviews with the Head of Mission and program managers, a meeting with the Locally-engaged staff Committee, individual interviews with staff, and results of other documentation reviewed. The level of inspection work was therefore based on issues and information identified and gathered at all levels, HQ, Mission Management and Mission operations.

Executive Summary

An inspection of Mission Management, the Political Economic (PE), International Business Development (IBD), Consular and Administration Programs was conducted in Kinshasa from June 1 to 5, 2009. The previous audit of these programs took place in 2003.

The Embassy in Kinshasa is a small mission with eight Canada based staff (CBS) and 14 Locally engaged staff (LES) and,***, delivers its mandate.

Mission plans were in-line with Government of Canada and departmental objectives and priorities. Not all programs had fully developed operational plans. Departmental tools and initiatives, such as TRIO and the New Way Forward are understood and implemented.

The Inspection identified a requirement for greater monitoring *** through systems such as Integrated Management System (IMS), as well as a need to revisit procedures to ensure compliance with policies in areas such as Property and Contracting.

The Mission had entered into a set of five non-competitive contracts with a service provider, that are renewed annually and which have potential employer/employee relationships issues as well as the possibility of being non-compliant with section 10.2.6 of the Treasury Board Contracting Policy. There was no record of justification for sole sourcing on file, and the contractors are in receipt of benefits similar to those of employees, some of which are provided directly by the Mission. It is recommended that the Africa Bureau (GFD) consult with others in Headquarters in order to resolve this issue.

Communications between the Political Economic (PE) and International Business Development (IBD) Programs and Headquarters needed significant improvement, and all parties should ensure that regular communications occur and that key messages are understood.***.

A total of 37 recommendations are raised in the report; 34 are addressed to the Mission and three are addressed to Headquarters (HQ). Mission management has responded to each recommendation indicating action already taken or decisions made, as well as future action. Of the 34 recommendations, management has stated that 24 have been implemented. For each of the remaining 10 recommendations, management has indicated the initiatives in progress or the intended future action. Of the three recommendations addressed to HQ, two have been implemented, and management have stated that the remaining one is in progress.

Mission Management

1.1 Overview

1.1.1 The Embassy in Kinshasa is a small mission with eight Canada-based staff (CBS) and 14 Locally-engaged staff (LES). The Mission is responsible for program delivery in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and the Republic of Congo. The Mission was operating ***. A Country Strategy outlining the main goals and objectives is in place.

1.1.2 ***.

1.1.3 The Head of Mission (HOM) is well regarded not only in diplomatic circles and the Canadian community, but also within Congolese society in Kinshasa. It was evident during the course of the Inspection *** .

1.1.4 The Mission holds weekly Operations meetings, and the Committee on Mission management (CMM) meets as required (approximately every 2 months). The LES Committee had been inactive in previous years, and was revitalized shortly after the arrival of the HOM.

1.1.5 Training and development are taken seriously at the Mission, and a Mission wide training plan was under development at the time of the Inspection.

1.1.6 The Mission has the capacity to serve external clients in both official languages. ***. Other LES at the Mission are engaged in English lessons. Signage and information in reception areas are bilingual, however not all the signs in the operational areas are posted in both official languages.

Recommendation to the Mission

1.1.7 The Mission should ensure that all signage in the Operational areas are posted in both official languages.

Mission Action and Timeframe

1.1.7 All signage in the operational areas has been reviewed and is now in both official languages. Implemented August 2009.

Political Economic Program

2.1.1 The Political Economic (PE) Program in Kinshasa in managed by a *** FS-02 Political Counsellor/Program Manager (PM) who is supported by an LE-08 Public Affairs Officer and part-time by the AS-02 HOM Assistant.

2.1.2 The Program’s financial resources for 2008-2009 have been allocated per the table below

Table 1: Political Economic Program financial resources
Fund 2008-09

2.1.3 There is a significant reactive element to the work of the Section, especially regarding political reporting. ***.

2.1.4 ***. This would have been useful considering the *** operational environment. Communications, such as regular teleconferences had diminished during a period of crisis in the region resulting from a kidnapping, and neither party had re-started them.

2.1.5 The PM is pulled in many directions with responsibilities as Mission Security Officer (MSO), acting on behalf of the Defence Attache in Nairobi, and acting as backup for her Trade and MCO colleagues and on occasion as Chargé d’affaires during the HOM’s absence. She noted that the MSO role had taken up more of her time than she had anticipated. The PM has, however, been successful in working with other like minded missions to pool resources and gain access to normally inaccessible people or locations.

2.1.6 There is no operational plan for the Program. While the PM has consulted the Country Strategy periodically, and the reporting agreement less frequently, ***. There are no advocacy plans, however the PM indicated that an operational plan will be developed, including planned travel.

2.1.7 Public Diplomacy activities are also ad hoc, however the PM is working with the Public Affairs Officer to develop a Post Initiative Fund (PIF) plan. Despite the lack of formal plans, the Program delivered on Public Diplomacy objectives through the provision of a training session on Human Rights for Non-Governmental Organizations and an event for the Francophonie.

2.1.8 The Program Manager has received training on the New Way Forward, and the tool is used as much as possible considering they are operating ***. While the Public Affairs (PA) Officer is aware of the New Way Forward, ***, but has assisted in the creation and review of the list of alternate service providers which was sent to Headquarters (HQ).

2.1.9 Given that there are sufficient hospitality funds, the PM actively networks with her counterparts in other missions. Networking events with like-minded political officers, provide valuable venues to validate ideas and gain information. The PA Officer however has not yet been allocated a hospitality budget with which to develop and maintain key contacts.

2.1.10 The PA Officer has been at the Mission for about a year ***. A change in priorities has necessitated her involvement in the political reporting process,***.

2.1.11 There are weekly meetings, but no records of decisions are kept. There were open communications and a *** relationship between the PM and the PA Officer. Given that the PM is in the Secure Zone (SZ), and therefore not easily accessible to the LES, ***.

2.1.12 Both the Program Manager and Public Affairs Officer have Performance Management Program agreements, which have been completed for the last year and, at the time of the Inspection, they were developing this year’s agreements.

Recommendations to the Mission

2.1.13 The Mission should establish regularly scheduled teleconference calls with the appropriate HQ sections.

2.1.14 The Mission should ensure that operational plans, including advocacy and Public Diplomacy activities, are established.

2.1.15 In order to ensure continuity of key contacts, the Mission should provide the Public Affairs Officer with a hospitality budget for the independent establishment and maintenance of contacts.

2.1.16 ***.

Mission Actions and Timeframes

2.1.13 The Political Section and GFB re-established regular conference calls on June 25, 2009.

2.1.14 Operational plans for the PE section are being developed, which flow from the Country Strategy, the Reporting Agreement, as well as the PE budget and upcoming events in the DRC. Plans include Public Affairs activities, reporting and internal mission activities, as well as activities in other programs which have an impact on PE section. Recent budget cuts have required adjustments which are underway. In progress for completion in September 2009.

2.1.15 The Public Affairs Officer has been provided with a $200 hospitality budget to assist her efforts at establishing and maintaining contacts. The Program Manager has also provided the Public Affairs Officer with copies of the Hospitality Policy and the Kinshasa Hospitality Baremes and has begun walking her through the related practicalities (forms, etc.). Implemented August 2009.

2.1.16 ***.

International Business Development Program

3.1.1 The International Business Development (IBD) Program was established in Kinshasa in 2007 and comprises a team of three, an FS-03 Regional Trade Commissioner (RTC), an LE-09 Trade Commissioner (TC) and an LE-05 Trade Commissioner Assistant (TCA). The Program has spent much of its resources putting in place processes and procedures and has recently received the TRIO application. ***.

3.1.2 The Regional Trade Commissioner oversees the local TCs in Kinshasa, Lusaka and Yaounde, as well as a contractor who acts on behalf of Canada in Luanda, Angola. His regional role covers not only the DRC, Republic of Congo, Cameroun, Zambia and Angola, but also Chad, the Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. Travel in the DRC and to the countries in his region is difficult and time consuming, and has a significant impact on time and resources. ***.

3.1.3 In 2007 the Program developed it first IBD plan, which was very general and focussed on establishing the Program within the Mission. In the following year, the plan benefited from more feedback from Ottawa, however while the TC for the DRC was the creator of the document, feedback from Ottawa was directed to the RTC and not shared with the TC. This plan oriented efforts on delivering studies and organizing seminars on issues such as Corporate Social Responsibility.

3.1.4 The current plan for the Program is aligned with the Country Strategy, and uses an activity-based approach for performance measurement. While results-based management may be difficult to do, the RTC noted that the mining sector is significant in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, with an estimated $3.5 billion in Canadian assets in 2009 and that mining has created thousands of jobs for the Congolese people. The identification of these metrics is a first step to identifying potential key performance indicators (KPI). Further refinement of these as KPIs would, however, require attribution of the level of investment to a percentage of the employment growth in the sector.

3.1.5 It will be of benefit to the Program to develop individual work plans that take the strategic objectives of the Country Strategy and the high level project objectives of the IBD plan and initiatives, and make them more operational. The IBD Program has, however, established individual training plans, and the TCA is scheduled for Global Learning Initiative 1 (GLI-1) trade training in October 2009.

3.1.6 The Program in Kinshasa recently began to hold weekly meetings with minutes, and this should be continued.

3.1.7 The Program is committed to the use of TRIO. The RTC is provided with TRIO data on a weekly basis. The RTC, TC and TCA have received training and have begun to implement the tool. While the TCA has started using TRIO, she has not yet received training. The Mission indicates that she is scheduled for GLI training in October 2009.

3.1.8 The RTC makes use of hospitality funds in order to build and maintain networks, however the TC has not been provided with hospitality funds in order to do similar networking. This is especially important as the TC will provide continuity as rotational RTCs change regularly.

3.1.9 While there is awareness of the Global Commerce Strategy, there were few clear views on how it would affect Program delivery in the DRC.. *** do not appear to be fully aware of HQ guidance on topics such as new client definitions, or the role of the IBD Program in disputes. ***.

Recommendations to the Mission

3.1.11 The IBD Program should develop operational work plans that address the strategic objectives and feed into individual work plans.

3.1.12 The RTC should ensure that the TC is involved in all stages of the drafting and editing of IBD plans for the country.

3.1.13 The TC should have dedicated hospitality funds to enable him to establish and maintain contacts.

3.1.14 The Program Manager should ensure that staff are reminded to routinely visit @Horizons@ and inform themselves of key information on issues such as new client definitions, global enquiries guidelines, and commercial disputes.

Mission Actions and Timeframes

3.1.11 The TC is instructed to review the IBD plan and to include, with the RTC, operational and personal objectives. In progress for implementation in September 2009

3.1.12 The TC is now instructed to correct the current IBD plan according to the remarks already made by GFC, and to prepare the 2010 11 plan. In progress for implementation in September 2009.

3.1.13 Taking into account the announced cuts, the TC has now $200 for official hospitality and understands the rules for official hospitality. Implemented in July 2009.

3.1.14 A section of Horizon is now examined at each weekly Commercial Section meeting. Implemented in July 2009.

Recommendation to the Africa Commercial Relations (GFC)

3.1.15 ***.

Africa Commercial Relations (GFC) Actions and Timeframes

3.1.15 ***.

Consular Program

4.1 Overview

4.1.1 The Consular Program in Kinshasa is overseen by the AS-05 Management Consular Officer (MCO) who is assisted by an LE-07 Consular Officer. The Program also provides consular services to Australian citizens.

4.1.2 Consular volume is light but steady. Specific volumes were difficult to ascertain as there were known issues concerning the ***. The MCO and the Consular Officer should review system entries regularly and compare against actual cases and activities.

4.1.3 Consular services provided for people in the Kinshasa area are relatively straight-forward,***.

4.1.4 Infrastructure issues also affect the Mission’s ability to maintain a network of Canadians living in the country (even those registered with the Register of Canadians Abroad database) and establish a *** warden network. That said, the Mission is actively seeking to fill its warden roster. ***.

4.1.5 The Consular Officer is continuously on call for after-hours Consular services or emergencies. She is the primary point of contact for the Ottawa-based Watch Office. As a result, she is required to be reachable and deployable at all times. Ideally the first call from the Watch Office should be to a CBS who would then determine the significance of the incident and then decide how to and what Mission resources to deploy.

4.1.6 The Mission has one booth. The booth is used by both the Consular Officer and MCO for Consular cases and by the Immigration Officer for dealing with applicants. The room is occupied alternatively by one or the other when it is needed to deal with a client. ***.

4.1.7 ***, although the last to be destroyed were properly handled (sent back to HQ).

4.1.8 The Mission passport inventory was verified and all assets were accounted for. Processes related to passports at the Mission are sound, however processing standards were not posted in the public reception area.

4.1.9 Feedback from Mission clients by way of clients submitting the feedback form to HQ was infrequent. The Mission makes these forms available in the public reception area, but does not actively hand them out to clients.

Recommendations for the Mission

4.1.10 The MCO, in conjunction with the Consular Officer, needs to review ***.

4.1.11 The Mission should accelerate its efforts to complete ***.

4.1.12 A CBS should be the primary point of contact for the Consular Watch Office and a system whereby the Consular Officer is not required to be on call at all times should be developed and implemented.

4.1.13 The Consular booth should be used to deal with clients, without exception.

4.1.14 ***.

4.1.15 Passport processing times should be posted in the public reception area.

4.1.16 Consular feedback forms should be handed out to each client.

Mission Action and Timeframes

4.1.10 The MCO and the Consular Officer ***. Implemented June 2009.

4.1.11 The mission has put in place a plan to complete ***.

4.1.12 The MCO is the primary point of contact and the Political officer the second point of contact for the Consular Watch Office and the changes are reflected in COSMOS. Implemented September 2009.

4.1.13 The Immigration booth is shared between the Immigration assistant and the Consular officer. When it is not available, the second window at Reception is used by Consular. Implemented June 2009.

4.1.14 ***. Implemented September 2009.

4.1.15 Passport processing times have been posted in the reception area and at the guard unit outside. Implemented September 2009.

4.1.16 Consular feedback forms are given to each client by the Consular Officer and / or by the Receptionist. Implemented September 2009.

Administration Program

5.1 Overview

5.1.1 The Administration Program in Kinshasa is managed by the MCO who is assisted by an LE-08 Office Manager, an LE-07 Accountant, an LE-06 Property and Material Officer, an LE-05 Administrative Assistant and an LE-05 Receptionist. Three Drivers are also placed within the Program.

5.1.2 The Mission and its staff quarters (SQs) are serviced and maintained by a group of 13 contract staff. These 13 staff consist of six gardeners, two handymen, two cleaners, a cook, a majordomo and a temporary driver (a competition is currently underway to hire another Mission employed driver to replace this contract resource). Of the six gardeners three work full-time at the Head of Mission’s residence, two work full time at two CBS SQs with exterior gardens and one works at the Chancery. The two handymen work at all locations. The cleaners work at the Chancery. The cook and majordomo are at the HOM’s residence.

5.1.3 The contract for the 13 staff described above is problematic in numerous respects. Prior to 2005, personal service contracts had been entered into with each of the individuals to provide the range of services noted. Given the ongoing nature of the contracts and the creation or reinforcement of the perception of employer-employee relationships through direct supervision by Mission staff, the practice of entering into direct personal service contracts with these employees was discontinued. The solution was to enter into a contract with an enterprise that would hire and assemble the employees required and provide them to the Mission. The result was five contracts with the same enterprise for different services (gardening, cleaning, cook, majordomo, handymen). The total annual value of the contracts is over $100,000.

5.1.4 The annual process of renewing the contracts is also problematic. The contracts have been sole-sourced to the same enterprise for each year since the current arrangement was developed. There is no bidding process for the contracts and sole-source justifications were not placed on the contract file. The creation of five separate contracts with the same enterprise for various services also gives the appearance of contract splitting, even if there are differing requirements under each contract.

5.1.5 It is not apparent that this arrangement has at all mitigated the potential creation of employer/employee relationships. All employees report to work daily, are directly supervised by Mission staff and receive a similar salary and benefit package as LES.

5.1.6 Given the Category III entitlements, the Mission is clearly obtaining services which are not permitted under this categorization. That said, for at least half of the contractors (cleaning staff, Chancery gardeners) there is a clear need to continue to secure these services. In the other cases, a resolution to the current situation is required. The Geographic needs to review and approve:

  • The level of services required, distinguishing between personal entitlements for a Category III mission and mission operations;
  • how these services are to be secured (positions vs. contract), and;
  • the legal and liability issues regarding employer/employee relationships with existing contractors.

5.1.7 Overall the Program is addressing the workload under its responsibility. From an operational perspective, the Mission runs well, buildings and other material assets are well maintained and clients receive good service. This is *** especially when considering the *** and the resources available to the Program. This considered, the Program would benefit from more formalized planning and communication within the Program and for more efficient processes and controls. Program-wide meetings with an agenda and minutes were not being held.

5.1.8 The Program has suffered from a lack of capacity over recent years. As a single-MCO post, a great variety and depth of work are assumed by the MCO. The recently created position of the LE-08 Office Manager should help to alleviate some of the demands. Once the contractor situation has been clarified, the category of the Mission may need to be reviewed.

5.1.9 As a result of the configuration of the Section, specifically the lack of management level support for the MCO, many day-to-day activities are overseen by the MCO. This reduces time for more strategic-level activities and creates pressures on staff. ***.

5.1.10 Due to the resource constraints mentioned above, the Program has not benefited from an adequate level of strategic planning and objective setting in recent years. Plans for the most part were non-existent or inadequate and the process of completing Program employee’s Performance Management Programs (PMPs) has not been done on a timely basis.

5.1.11 *** within the Program are not as strong as they should be. Processes *** were missing in key areas, ***. It is expected that, with the recent addition of the Office Manager, the lack of *** will be addressed. Specific issues noted and the corresponding recommendations will be included in the subsequent portions of this report.

Recommendations to the Africa Bureau (GFD)

5.1.12 In consultation with the Locally Engaged Staff Services Bureau (ALD), Contracting Policy, Monitoring and Operations (SPP) and the Legal Services Division (JUS), the Geographic should review the five contracts for services and determine the related operational services required and how best to resource these.

5.1.13 The Geographic should reconfirm the Mission’s current categorization as a Category III.

GFD Actions and Timeframes

5.1.12 GFB, through consultations, has identified the services required at the Mission for maintenance and cleaning of the Chancery. These will be secured through a service contract. The review identified, per Chapter 16 of the Property Management Manual, gardening whose costs will be borne jointly by the Mission and the HOM, and those gardening services whose costs will now be the responsibility of the tenants of the SQs. Services of a Cook and Majordomo will be secured through contract on an event by event basis, per the policy on Official Hospitality Outside of Canada. GFB will further consult with ALD and the legal bureau on the issues of employer employee relationships, contracting, and recovery of funds per the Policy on Losses of Money and Offences and Other Illegal Acts Against the Crown. Corrective measures will be in place by March 31, 2010.

5.1.13 After careful consideration, it is the view of the geographic bureau that Kinshasa's current categorization as a Category III mission should be maintained.

5.2 Human Resources

5.2.1 The Human Resources function at the Mission is managed by the MCO. Assistance with this function will be provided by the recently created and staffed Office Manager position.

5.2.2 Overall, Human Resource files and practices were in good order. Competition and employee files were reviewed and well documented.

5.2.3 The Locally Engaged Staff Committee was recently revitalized upon the insistence of the Head of Mission. Elections were held and the newly formed Committee has been working on an updated Terms of Reference. ***, but does seek to meet with each LES individually at least every six months.

5.2.4 Training and development needs are taken seriously at the Mission. Employees from different Programs have all recently benefited from training opportunities. To further enhance the planning and management of training at the Mission, a consolidated training plan is under development. This will help to identify common needs and ways to make training more efficient and accessible within the Mission.

5.2.5 The status of employee Performance Management Programs varied between Programs. In many cases the PMP exercise had not been finalized within the prescribed time frame.

Recommendations to the Mission

5.2.6 ***.

5.2.7 The Mission should ensure that a PMP process is completed for each Mission employee every fiscal year.

Mission Actions and Timeframes

5.2.6 ***. The President of the Committe is also given the opportunity to speak at each monthly All Embassy staff meeting chaired by the HOM. Implemented June 2009.

5.2.7 All PMPs have been completed for FY08-09 and all staff have PMPs for FY09-10. Implemented August 2009.

5.3 Physical Resources

5.3.1 The Property function in Kinshasa is overseen by the MCO who is assisted by a recently hired LE-08 Office Manager and an LE-05 Property Assistant.

5.3.2 The property portfolio in Kinshasa consists of a Crown-owned Chancery and Annex (currently occupied by the Post Support Unit (PSU)), one Crown-owned staff quarter, 6 leased staff quarters and 5 Mission owned vehicles and 3 Headquarters owned armoured vehicles. These assets were well maintained.

5.3.3 Distribution accounts for all SQs were completed, however, there is no inventory of Chancery assets. A capital maintenance and acquisition plan (which would includes vehicles) is also lacking. The creation of the inventory and capital asset plan would help to prioritize and budget for maintenance and asset replacement. A plan to monitor some routine activities (such as water and generator fuel delivery) at the SQs has been created, but is inadequate for the overall needs of the Program as it does not address larger-scale maintenance requirements nor does it contain a replacement schedule. Such monitoring could serve as a basis from which to establish a more robust annual maintenance, inspection and asset replacement plan.

5.3.4 Given the local propensity for power outages, the Chancery/Annex and some SQs are equipped with generators. SQs in some leased buildings were already equipped with generation capacity. Fuel for Mission-owned generators is consumed and replaced on a regular basis. While fuel purchased for these generators was monitored fairly closely, fuel purchases are not being reconciled to usage. Reconciling usage will ensure that fuel purchased is accounted for and can also help to identify poorly performing units that require maintenance or replacement.

5.3.5 The vehicle fleet is adequate for Mission needs. Maintenance service is not only required more frequently in this environment, given road conditions, but is difficult to obtain. This is further complicated by the fact that 3 of 8 of the Mission’s vehicles are armoured.

5.3.6 Mission drivers maintain a log which lists each trip taken and has the passenger’s signature to verify the trip. Drivers are provided with fuel coupons for refuelling. While the maintenance of the trip log is a good control, the Program was not reconciling the use of fuel coupons to overall mileage driven.

5.3.7 As mentioned earlier in section 5.1 there are three gardeners working full time at the enhanced SQ occupied by the HOM, and one each at two other SQs with large exterior gardens. The provision of these workers to these SQs is not permitted. The formula to compensate employees for gardening assistance when there is a large exterior garden was not being enforced. The two SQs and the HOM’s enhanced SQ that have gardeners provided to them are also receiving pool maintenance at Mission expense.

5.3.8 As Kinshasa is a Category III mission, the HOM is not entitled to the full time cook and majordomo, as is currently provided. This arrangement has been in place since the Mission reopened in 1997. Given representational requirements, a portion of these services may be funded.

Recommendations to the Mission

5.3.9 The Mission should create an inventory of all Crown-owned physical assets at the Chancery.

5.3.10 A long-term capital maintenance, inspection and replacement plan should be developed by the Mission and updated annually.

5.3.11 Fuel purchased for Mission vehicles should be reconciled to distance driven monthly.

5.3.12 Fuel purchased for generators should also be reconciled to hours of operation at each refuelling.

5.3.13 The provision of Mission-paid gardening and pool maintenance services to the HOM’s enhanced SQ and the two CBS house SQs should cease. Employees eligible for gardening assistance (based on the size of the gardens, per 16.7.3 of the Property Management Manual) should apply for reimbursement and begin paying the balance of the cost. Employees with pools included with their SQs should pay for the full cost of maintenance, per 16.7.2 of the Property Management Manual.

Mission Actions and Timeframes

5.3.9 The Mission is in the process of inventorying all Crown owned physical assets at the Chancery. To be implemented November 2009

5.3.10 The long-term capital maintenance, inspection and replacement plan will be finalised by the end of December 2009.

5.3.11 The fuel purchased for mission vehicles is being reconciled to the number of kilometres monthly. Implemented August 2009.

5.3.12 The fuel purchase for generators is being reconciled to the hours of operation after each refuelling. Implemented August 2009.

5.3.13 The mission is in the process of calculating the cost to be paid by CBS for garden maintenance. All CBS are purchasing their own pool chemicals. To be implemented December 2009.

5.4 Finance

5.4.1 The Finance function in Kinshasa is overseen by the MCO who is assisted by an LE-07 Accountant.

5.4.2 The operating environment in Kinshasa requires significant use of cash payments as the use of credit cards and cheques are relatively infrequent in this society.

5.4.3 The HOM provides oversight of Mission finances through monthly bank statement reconciliation. ***.

5.4.4 Currently *** is the primary contact point at the Mission for dealings with the Mission’s bank. The monthly bank statement is delivered to and opened ***.

5.4.5 The Mission does not have an established Contract Review Board, nor the associated Terms of Reference. As such, large contracts were not subjected to scrutiny beyond the signatories.

5.4.6 ***. In some instances expense reimbursement claims were signed where insufficient supporting documentation was present (e.g. a travel claim that was missing a hotel invoice or proof of payment).

5.4.7 Certain transactions were processed against incorrect expenditure codes. The Accountant, through the verification signature, needs to be in concurrence with the use of the selected financial coding for transactions. The Mission should ensure that correct coding is always applied, and that extraordinary transactions contain documentation to explain what process was used and the associated rationale.

Recommendations to the Mission

5.4.8 ***.

5.4.9 The MCO should be the primary point of contact at the Mission for all interactions with the bank.

5.4.10 The Mission should establish a Contract Review Board (CRB), develop a Terms of Reference for it and ensure that it properly scrutinizes Mission contracts.

5.4.11 ***. In cases where there is a direct reimbursement to the employee, (Overtime or Travel Claims) it should be avoided without exception.

5.4.12 The Mission should ensure that transactions are coded to the proper accounts in all cases. Where there is doubt or difference of opinion, clarification should be sought from International Financial Operations (SMFF).

Mission Actions and Timeframes

5.4.8 ***. Implemented September 2009.

5.4.9 The MCO is the primary point of contact with the bank. Implemented September 2009.

5.4.10 The Mission has an ad hoc Contract Review Board that reviews contracts over CAD 1000.00 before signature. The terms of reference are being developed. To be implemented by December 2009.

5.4.11 ***. Implemented June 2009.

5.4.12 Where there is a doubt or difference of opinion, clarification will be sought from SMFF. Implemented September 2009.

5.5 Information Technology/Information Management (IM/IT)

5.5.1 IM/IT at the Mission is managed by the MCO and, at the time of the Inspection, had an agreement with the Post Support Unit (PSU) for 40% of the time of their Information Technology Professional. Additional support is provided by the Foreign Service Information Technology Professional (FSITP) based in Nairobi.

5.5.2 The Mission indicated that they expected to have a full time Locally Engaged Information Technology Professional (LEITP) hired by mid-June of 2009. This should complement the work of the FSITP who visits the Mission throughout the year, but infrequently due to the workload across the four missions that he covers.

5.5.3 There is no IM/IT operation plan at the Mission, however there is an IT operation budget for the purchase of items such as consumables and laptops. IM/IT issues are raised in an ad hoc manner at Management Committees as there is no IM/IT Committee.

5.5.4 The MCO was not aware of her access to the Remedy help desk system, nor to the MCO portal that would give her access to view the Remedy tickets for her Mission. While the Mission does use the system for major support activities, there is still a need to record all assistance in the Remedy tool, even minor jobs.

5.5.5 The Mission felt that bandwidth is not sufficient for its needs. A review of the reports on usage shows that the Mission’s bandwidth is well within acceptable levels, and that the network latency is as expected for a mission linked by a ***.

5.5.6 ***.

5.5.7 The Mission makes use of a shared network drive with a specific folder structure and restrictions on access as deemed necessary, however there is no formal guidance or local procedures for IM. The Mission is in the process of identifying and cleaning up out of date documents.

5.5.8 An IT asset inventory is maintained through Remedy. There have been no disposals of IT assets to date, however there are a number of computers that are being prepared for disposal through donation to charity. The Mission was not aware of the required approvals related to the disposal of IT assets either to charity or through sale.

5.5.9 ***. Both the MCO and FSITP have been made aware of this issue, and HQ has indicated that it will be investigating why the push of the updates were not successful.

Recommendations to the Mission

5.5.10 The Mission should establish an IM/IT workplan that schedules both local work and visits of the FSITP.

5.5.11 The Mission should ensure that formal IM/IT discussions are regularly held.

5.5.12 ***.

5.5.13 All IM/IT should ensure that all support is recorded against either a specific ticket, or time allocated to a general ticket opened at the start of the week.

5.5.14 ***.

5.5.15 The Mission should establish local Information Management procedures.

Mission Actions and Timeframes

5.5.10 The Mission will be working in consultation with AISK and the CSRM in NROBI to create an IMIP, once the newly hired LEITP has received training at HQ. To be implemented March 2010.

5.5.11 IM/IT will be added to the list of items for discussion at the Committee on Mission Management. IM/IT issues are discussed weekly at the Administration Management Meeting. Implemented September 2009.

5.5.12 ***.Implemented June 2009.

5.5.13 All IM/IT support in KNSHA is recorded against a ticket or the time allocated to a general ticket. Implemented September 2009

5.5.14 ***. To be implemented March 2010.

5.5.15 The mission is working in consultation with the CSRM to produce local Information Management procedures. To be implemented March 2010.

Appendix A: Mission Resources Fact Sheet

Table 2: Mission Resources Fact Sheet of Physical Resources
Physical Resources Kinshasa
AssetsCrown OwnedCrown Leased
Official Residence--
Staff Quarters15

Table 3: Financial Information Kinshasa
Financial Information 2008-2009 Kinshasa
Operating Budget (N001)$1,890,979
Capital Budget (N005)$81,643
CBS Salaries Budget (N011)$431,500
LES Salaries Budget (N012)$296,595

Appendix B: Organization Chart

Organization Chart

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