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FG seeks Nigeria’s delisting from money laundering blacklist

By on August 1, 2013

The Federal Government has expressed the confidence that Nigeria will soon stop having issues with the Financial Action Task Force regarding money laundering and counter financing terrorism regimes.

A statement quoted Vice-President Namadi Sambo as saying this on Tuesday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, during the maiden meeting of a cabinet committee set up by President Goodluck Jonathan on the issue.

Sambo promised that the committee would work hard to ensure that Nigeria’s name was completely removed from the FATF blacklist.

He said it was the belief of the President that with the measures already put in place regarding laws and regulations, the country should not continue to remain on the public statement of the FATF.

The vice-president noted that in a deliberate attempt to accelerate the delisting of Nigeria from FATF books, Jonathan had constituted the high-powered committee and charged it to work assiduously to ensure the effective discharge of its mandate.

“I urge you all to work hard towards ensuring that we maintain the integrity of our financial system through effective implementation of laws and regulations against financial improprieties,” Sambo was quoted as saying.

He also ordered the immediate sanitisation of the country’s international airports, particularly the enforcement of the currency declaration regime by travellers.

The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on the FATF, Mr. Stephen Oronsaye, was said to have noted that the committee had made considerable efforts at ensuring that Nigeria was removed from the FATF blacklist, particularly in areas of strict implementation of rules and regulations in the financial system.

Officials of the FATF are expected to visit Nigeria in September. The visit is meant to facilitate the delisting of the country from the body’s books.

Meanwhile, the Federal Government has inaugurated the Governing Board of the National Agency for Science and Engineering with a mandate for its members to work swiftly to attract 5,000 new businesses to the country.

He also inaugurated the Governing Board of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission and saddled it with the responsibility of achieving the financial closure of 19 proposed Public-Private Partnership projects across the country.

The two boards were inaugurated on behalf of the President by Sambo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

While Jonathan himself chairs the board of NASENI and Dr. Muhammad Haruna serves as the vice chairman; a former President of the Senate, Chief Ken Nnamani, heads the ICRC board.

Jonathan said he inaugurated the NASENI board with the expectation that the agency would facilitate and support Nigerian businesses so that they could deliver new ideas and technologies to the nation’s wafting market.

He added that in line with his administration’s transformation agenda, he expected that within the next few years, NASENI as an agency of technological advancement, would achieve made-in-Nigeria aircraft components in collaboration with the private sector; manufacture heavy duty trucks, tanks and tropicalised electric cars; and facilitate the production of multi-purpose electric motors and generators locally.