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Saturday, October 23, 2021

Gambia beefs up machineries to fight money laundering

He said the capacity of the Financial Intelligence Unit has recently been strengthened with the recruitment of more staff, in addition to the staff of the Banking Supervision department, of the Central Bank, attached to the Unit. 

FIU is one of the two institutions directly responsible for implementing anti-money laundering and combating terrorism financing measures in The Gambia.

The statement of the finance minister was read on his behalf by the Minister of Interior, Ousman Sonko, on Tuesday at the commencement of a three-day workshop for the development a national strategy to combat ML and TF in The Gambia. 

In the speech, the finance minister said The Gambia government has also provided budget to the FIU for its effective operation.  

He added: “The FIU is currently working closely with the commercial banks in the country to put measures in place for the detection of suspicious financial transactions for reporting purposes.

“Also, the operations of Gambia National Drug Enforcement Agency (NDEA), the other institution directly responsible for implementing anti-money laundering and combating terrorism financing measures in The Gambia, have been strengthened to prepare it for the task ahead.”

The finance minister added that a committee of Chief Compliance Officers of Banks in The Gambia was established in line with the recommendation by FATF, global standard-setters in the fight against ML and TF.  

The committee serves as a forum for information sharing on compliance issues between banks and it also seeks to network with similar bodies outside The Gambia. 

According to the finance minister, these measures in place couple with the Anti-Money Laundering Act 2012 would fast-track the realisation of the overall objective of reducing crimes of money laundering and terrorism financing to its barest minimum in The Gambia.

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