By Ndey Sowe
Stakeholders on The Gambia’s Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorism Financing (AML/CFT) regime are undergoing training on assessment process.
This marks the pre- assessment training for Gambia’s 2nd round of mutual evaluation for AML/CFT stakeholders organized by Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA).
The training was held at the Kairaba Beach Hotel on Monday, 15th February, 2021. The five-day training (15th to 19th February, 2021) aims to expose and acquaint stakeholders with the assessment process.
GIABA is a specialized institution of the Economic Community of West African States responsible for facilitating the adoption and implementation of Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Counter- Terrorism Financing (CFT) in West Africa.
Momodou Saho, Deputy Director for Financial Intelligence Unit of The Gambia (FIU) who represented the FIU Director General, said the knowledge and awareness the stakeholders will gained, will pave way for a smooth and productive assessment process.
He added that the outcome will form the basis for The Gambia’s 2nd round for mutual evaluation.
“Initiatives like this training, especially within the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, underscore the commitment of GIABA in supporting Member States to achieve the common objectives of combating Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism and Proliferation,” he said.
This year marks about 12 years since GIABA subjected The Gambia to its 1st round of Mutual Evaluation in 2008.
Juldeh Ceesay, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs, reaffirmed her ministry’s will continue to work closely with stakeholders in the process leading up to imminent mutual evaluation.
She added that the work of international bodies such as the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and regional organizations like GIABA is crucial in helping to preserve the integrity of financial systems and national economies.
Dr. Buno Nduka, Director of Evaluation and Compliance GIABA, noted that one of the core mandates of GIABA as an FSRB is to ascertain the level of compliance of its member states with the international AML/CFT measures, particularly the FATF standard through mutual evaluation.
He commended The Gambia for accepting to undergo the 2nd mutual evaluation with the on-site schedule for August 22-September 3rd, 2021.