Guma Management Inspires SALWACO Staff

A cross section of staff from the Commercial Department at the Sierra Leone Water Company (SALWACO) have completed a week study visit to the Guma Valley Water Company from 7th to 11th November, 2022.

The SALWACO team led by the Acting Managing Director, Albert Harvey, were heartily welcomed by the Managing Director of Guma, Ing. Maada S. Kpenge.

Speaking, the Guma MD said he was pleased to receive a second batch of staff from a sister utility on exchanging of ideas and enhancing staff capacity.

Ing. Kpenge explained that about 10 years ago, Guma was in a very desperate situation and was struggling a lot pay salaries and meet other operations and maintenance costs.

He said the company decided to change that narrative in December 2012 starting with the 100 Days Transformation program and since there has been steady progress in all areas of its operations – improved access to water supply, billing, collection, and customer care services.

“The solution to our problems did not come from outside, it came from within. We held several workshops, troubleshoot the issues and came up with recommendations and staff incentive programs. Along the way, we got a lot of help from other organisations; and today, we are not 100% there but we have been able to fix most of the issues that used to exist”.

He admonished the staff of SALWACO to put their shoulder to the wheel and work hard so as to be able to generate enough revenue to meet their operations and maintenance costs.

In his response, the Acting Managing Director of SALWACO, Albert Harvey said he was impressed with the positive reengineering that has taken place at Guma and the commitment of it staff. Mr. Harvey called on his staff to be very inquisitive and prepare to learn as much as possible during the 5-day study visit.

The Acting MD extended his thanks and appreciation to the Management of Guma Valley Water Company on behalf of his Boss, Ing. George Lamin, the Board of Directors of SALWACO and the Ministry of Water Resources for implementing the training.

During the course of the 5-day study visit, several presentations on Guma’s current situation were done by the Deputy Managing Director, Ing. Francis Lahai, Director of Commercial Services, Eunice Tejan and the Community Services Manager, Pierre Palmer.

The SALWACO staff were also able to have first-hand experiences about Guma’s processes and procedures on New Customer Service Connection, Billing, Collection, Meter Reading, Customer Complaint Handling, Cashier operations, Community and Commercial Bowser operations as well field visits to Area Offices, the Community Services Office and the Guma Dam and Treatment Plant at Mile 13.

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In 2015, over 30 staff of SALWACO were embedded in various Guma offices for a period of 3 months to enhanced their capacity in engineering and commercial operations.

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