President Ellen Johnson – Sirleaf says one of the factors responsible for money laundering in the West African region is weak banking system and the unguided porous borders.
“As you know the multiple forms of money laundering deprive our country of tens of billions of dollars that could build our nations and reduce the level of poverty of our people” Mrs. Sirleaf said on Saturday, 13 May at the Central Bank of Liberia or CBL.
Mrs. Sirleaf was speaking over the weekend at the closure of the Intergovernmental Action Group Against Money Laundering, calling upon relevant authorities to discuss results from the technical committee that will guide the decision of the ECOWAS heads of state in the way forward to improve the regional program.
The Liberian Leader and Chairperson of regional bloc ECOWAS says money laundering and other illicit crimes happen as a result of weaknesses in banking systems and unguided porous borders.
She says it undermines the peace and stability that West African countries have earned in decades of economic, social and political transformation. According to President Sirleaf, these multiple forms of crimes are well outlined in the report of the High Level Panel that terrorists get their funding from illicit flows.
She calls it the national concern to the West African region, adding that the recent start of terroristic activities in the sub-region, evidenced by Bamako activities in Mali echoes the need to do more to address these flows. She notes that Liberia is well behind compared to the rest in the sub-region in establishing policies relating to money laundering and countering the finance of terrorist.
Mrs. Sirleaf said Liberia will continue to work with other nations to strengthen its banking system and the Finance Intelligence Unit or FIU which will coordinate these processes.
By Lewis S. Teh-Edited by Winston W. Parley