Kanchana to Take Legal Action Against Financial Irregularities: Forensic Audit Exposes Shocking Losses and Data Tampering in Sri Lanka's Petroleum Industry

February 19, 2024

Power and Energy Minister Kanchna Wijesekera will pursue legal action based on the recent forensic audit, conducted by KPMG, which has revealed major  financial losses and data tampering within the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) and Ceylon Petroleum Storage Terminals (CPSTL), highlighting critical issues in Sri Lanka's petroleum industry.

Following a complaint lodged by the Power and Energy Minister with the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) in August 2022, the investigation uncovered alarming irregularities in SAP data, with over 1.3 million entries altered or deleted since 2010. Particularly concerning was the surge in such activities during 2022, coinciding with a period of heightened fuel crisis.

Presented to Minister Kanchana Wijesekera, the audit report highlighted substantial losses amounting to Rs. 28 billion in 2022, attributed to stock holding discrepancies. However, following regulatory intervention, these losses diminished significantly to Rs. 4 billion by 2023, signaling improved financial controls.

Systemic issues within the CPSTL, including the use of outdated circulars and inadequate data management practices, further compounded the challenges in identifying irregularities.

In response, the Minister is set to receive the complete audit report next week, with plans to forward it to the CID for further investigation and legal action. Additionally, stakeholders including Cabinet members, Parliament, the Auditor General, and the Attorney General's Department will be briefed on the findings to facilitate necessary policy interventions