Following the consideration of the report of the Senate Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes at plenary, the Nigerian Senate on Wednesday passed the Money Laundering Act, 2011, Amendment Bill.
Presenting the report, Sen. Suleiman Abdu Kwari, the Chairman of the Committee, said that the bill sought to amend the institutional and legal framework of the bill.
“The amendment will provide for an effective and comprehensive legal framework to reinvigorate the fight against money laundering in the country by emphasizing prevention as a useful tool to strengthen the existing legal regime in combating money laundering and other related crimes in the country,” he said.
Kwari said that the bill provided appropriate penalties as well as expanded the scope of supervisory bodies to effectively address the challenges faced in the implementation of anti-money laundering laws in Nigeria.
He said that the bill provided protection for employees of various anti-graft institutions, and approved the establishment of the Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering under the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
Kwari said that the unit when established, would be charged with the effective implementation of the money laundering laws about designated Non-Financial Businesses and or Professions in Nigeria.
“The enactment of this bill will resolve the institutional issues regarding the establishment of the Special Control Unit against Money Laundering under the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment, being implemented by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
“The bill seeks to introduce certain supervisory and enforcement mechanism, through the imposition of administrative penalties for breach of any requirement imposed by law,” the lawmaker said.
The bill was passed by the Upper chamber after consideration by the Committee of the Whole.