ECOWAS Asks Academics To Support Fight Against Financial Crimes

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is seeking collaboration with academics in the area of research aimed at checking money laundering and terrorism financing in the West African sub region.

Officials of the ECOWAS Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA) made the call at the second Annual Public Lecture on anti-money laundering regimes which held at the University of Benin, Benin City, the Edo state capital.

They appealed to Nigerians to support the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in the fight against money laundering and all other forms of corruption.

Speaking at the event, the Director General of GIABA, who was represented by Dr Bruno Nduka, said, “The implementation of an effective EML safety standard, especially within our region, poses unique challenges and this requires collective, concerted, coordinated and collaborative efforts at all levels.

“Furthermore, the dynamic nature of the criminal world and the continuing menace of money laundering and terror financing, make it imperative for all stakeholders including the academia to deepen collaboration with GIABA to effectively address threats arising from these crimes.”

The Deputy Vice Chancellor Administration of the University of Benin, Professor Jacob Ehiorobo also commended the initiative.

“The idea of gathering active minds for a public lecture like this will create the necessary platform to promote knowledge and sensitise the academic community of their roles in channeling research and teaching to the anti-money laundering/counter financing of terrorism efforts that will bring about management policies which will deal with this challenges in our society.”

Speaking to journalists after the lecture, the National Correspondent of GIABA, Mr Francis Usani, urged Nigerians to support the EFCC in its anti-corruption drive.

“With current vigor to fight these things, I think the EFCC is doing very well, my appeal to each and every one of us is to understand the impact of these things and let us try as much as possible to support the EFCC to do this job.

“Let us remove sentiment most times because I have been in situations where people will say, ‘What (offence) has this one committed?’, ‘What about the other one?’ But those (questions) are not justification for us to commit offences,” Mr Usani said.

It is expected that with the meeting, the group would come up with strategies to enable them check money launderers in the West African sub-region.

Source: Channels Tv

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