Strengthen Sub-Saharan financial systems to prevent terrorism, ANEEJ entreats Security Summit
10th May, 2016
Benin City, Nigeria: The Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice, ANEEJ, wants the Regional Security meeting between French President Francois Hollande and Mr. Muhammadu Buhari to work hard at strengthening financial systems in the West African Sub-region so as to forestall terrorists from exploiting weak anti-money laundering and Terrorist Financing systems prevalent in the region.
The Call is contained in a press release issued in Benin and signed by ANEEJ’s Executive Director, Rev. David Ugolor who urged the summit to take concrete steps to sanitize financial institutions and systems in the region to rid it of dirty money which sustains insurgency. The ANEEJ helmsman noted that most Sub-Saharan countries like Nigeria, Liberia, Ghana, and Benin Republic have high rates of actual and perceived indexes of corruption which cripple governance systems, a lack of resources to control their financial systems and a dearth of public financial transparency which terrorists latch on to form coalitions and exploit these weak institutions to perpetrate violence which ultimately corrodes human rights, leads to further impoverishment of the region and entrenchment of corruption.
‘The Basel Anti-Money Laundering Index report 2015 has shown that most of the West Africa Countries performed poorly in all the indicators which clearly confirm that there is urgent need for a global action to strengthen the Anti-Money Laundering regimes in the West Africa’, ANEEJ executive director, the Rev David Ugolor said.
“Boko Haram and the Islamic State in Lebanon, ISIL, and other terrorist groups are able to use the weak financial systems in Sub-Saharan Africa to move resources around easily to commit acts of terror. From 2014 when the terror group Boko Haram gained a foothold in North-East Nigeria, it captured territories in Nigeria and extended a lot of its terror network around the region into Cameroon, Mali and Niger Republic. Subsequently, it declared allegiance to ISIL, and has continued to receive logistics and financial support from the major terror networks around the world.
“ANEEJ is convinced that a much more rigorous monitoring of financial institution and laws regulating financial flows can cripple the ease with which terror organisations, drug cartels and grand corruption is being perpetrated in Europe and Africa.
‘The failures of former security summits notwithstanding, we believe that African states must jettison their monetary and colonial differences, and work to ensure that banks within the region must develop and share common data gathering strategies akin to the Consumer Due Diligence, CDD, policy which helps to check money laundering and terrorist financing. This kind of collaborative effort will help to dismantle the terror networks in the Sub-region and strengthen the capacity of governments to deal with terrorists and drug cartels’, the Rev Ugolor reiterated.
President Muhammadu Buhari is scheduled to host the French President, Francois Hollande and President Paul Biya of Cameroon to a Regional Security Summit in Abuja. Others also scheduled to arrive Abuja on Friday for the summit included the Presidents of Cameroon, Niger Republic, Chad and Benin Republic. Similarly, representatives of the United States, Britain, Equatorial Guinea, the European Union, ECOWAS, the Economic Community of Central African States and the Gulf of Guinea Commission are expected at the summit.
ABOUT ANEEJ: To contribute to the emergence of a just and equitable African society through socio-economic and environmental rights protection, institutional strengthening and people’s empowerment.
For more information please contact:
David Ugolor – Executive Director
Bob MajiriOghene Etemiku – Communications Manager
Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice, ANEEJ
39 Oyaide Street,
Off Benoni, GRA,
Advocacy Office: Plot 208, Zakariyah Maimalari Road
Off Herbert Macaulay Way,
Central Area, Abuja
email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org www.aneej.org
+2348156171133, +2348187674339, +234(0)8059880550
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