["I think there might be a bit of financial mismanagement by Christian."]
Friday October 22nd
I got a letter back from Anne the Financial Administrator and she was concerned with the bookkeeping I sent her and she told me to check Peter's bookkeeping more thoroughly next time, she said half of it was complete rubbish. I'll have a talk to Peter about it, I think I should do the whole thing myself next time and not leave half to Peter. She also asked me why I bought food in the market, when there is no budget allocation (the people in the capital sometimes don't understand an emergency when they see one), she asked Christian about it and he said he sent a three month supply of food to us just before Claude left and I arrived. Anyway I will try and check that out next week if I have time.
Had a good time at the feeding centre on Wednesday and Thursday. Really good fun and great to spend some time with the people, this is why I came here to spend time with this neglected population in danger. James the supervisor is a really fantastic guy and we had a good talk about Sierra Leone and the Politics and the future of the country. I really think they should spend more on the roads as it is pretty hard to get around at the moment.
Me and Peter had a big argument, he was insisting that we do a stock count of all the stores. Three Land Cruisers have broken down and he asked me pointedly did I send the vehicle parts order 2 weeks ago (I said I did to keep control, actually I forgot and only sent it this Tuesday). He said that he asked Claude as well and he had forgotten for two months and the vehicles have been running without filters and shock absorbers etc and that now they are broken down and it will be expensive to get them repaired. He also blamed me (amazing) because he said that to me two weeks ago that 3 of the vehicles shouldn't be on the road, and I said they have to be on the road to support the programme. I don't know how he expected to run the feeding centre with 1 truck and two Land Cruisers. Then he said a stock count has to be done because he suspects food is going missing from the feeding centre and other items from the store. Well I know that James runs a pretty tight ship in the feeding centre and I know that he can be trusted, although I am not sure if I am beginning to like Peter's attitude, when he is accusing other staff of dishonesty. He just seems to think that if we follow all the Hope International guidelines and rules that everything will be OK. I told him there is a bit more to being a humanitarian Logistician than just record keeping and procedures, it is also about solidarity with the population and listening. Peter really didn't understand this and this worries me. He said he will do the stock count himself.
I also got this really weird letter from Christian, I think the guy is under a lot of pressure. He wanted to know why I had written to Walter Jensen the Head of Logistics in Paris, complaining that I didn't get the satellite phone and radio (well it has been two weeks and nothing has been done). He then accused me of blowing his communication budget (he must have been a bit drunk when writing) and destroying a $US 3,000 generator by removing the fuel filter and the air filter. He said, that he didn't have the budget to buy a new generator and that it would take two weeks to repair. I would like to have seen what he would have done in my shoes. Sometimes I think that the people in the capital really don't know what its like in the field and the challenges we have to face. As for his budgets I think there might be a bit of financial mismanagement by Christian.
Ok Jen I will get back to you by letter about the wedding guest list. I am a bit tired so really have to get some sleep.
Dave (me) Claudia