CEO, TelEm Group
January 8, 2024
Dear Mr. Editor,
I hope this letter finds you well. I am writing in response to the front-page article published in the Daily Herald on January 3, 2024, which referenced a confidential operational audit report of the TelEm Group of Companies. Unfortunately, the article did not provide me, as the CEO, with an opportunity to respond and offer context and clarification as needed.
It is worth noting that the Daily Herald obtained a copy of the report, which explicitly states that its contents cannot be published without written permission from the government audit bureau (SOAB). However, the article proceeded without addressing this crucial point.
Nowhere in the article did it acknowledge the steps taken by the Management Board and the Supervisory Board to act upon the recommendations made in response to the operational audit. These actions were duly reported to the Shareholder. A simple inquiry with TelEm could have provided you with the necessary information to present a more balanced perspective.
The focus of the audit was on strategic-level issues. While we acknowledge the need for attention to certain aspects, it is essential to clarify that no fraudulent activities were discovered, contrary to the expectations of many prior to the audit.
TelEm's management has undertaken various measures to address highlighted issues, including the establishment of a Project Management Office and the implementation of automation through a Customer Relations Management (CRM) system from Microsoft, alongside other software solutions. These initiatives aim to furnish necessary information to Management, the Supervisory Board, and the Shareholder.
Furthermore, the audit recommended an evaluation of the current organizational structure to align with industry trends. Telecommunication organizations worldwide are restructuring due to the shift from per-minute voice calling to unlimited data. TelEm, in line with industry practices, is adapting to this change, which involves cost-cutting and the introduction of value-added services.
We are not oblivious to our financial situation, including a multi-million-dollar loan that requires repayment. The combined impact of Hurricane Irma and the COVID-19 pandemic has adversely affected our finances, with no assistance provided, unlike other organizations on the island.
Through this letter, I aim to clarify our company's position and the proactive steps taken in response to the operational audit report. This clarification is particularly crucial as our organization faces financial challenges that demand decisive action to ensure our survival.
Members of Parliament have access to the full content of the operational audit report and are fully aware that it does not mention fraud or mismanagement. It is disheartening that individuals without the best interests of the company or its personnel at heart continue to reference unverified reasons for the necessary actions being taken.
I appreciate your attention to this matter and hope that future coverage will accurately reflect TelEm's efforts to address challenges transparently and responsibly.
CEO, TelEm Group