By Ayobami Adedinni
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has expressed concern over the low level returns performance of Other Financial Institutions (OFIs) on anti- money laundering and combating financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) contrary to its regulatory requirement.
In a circular signed by Director, Other Financial Institutions Supervision Department, CBN, Mrs. Tokunbo Martins, the low returns has hampered supervisory efforts to effectively assess and mitigate money laundering risks in the industry.
OFIs include Microfinance Banks (MFBs), Primary Mortgage Banks (PMBs), Development Financial Institutions (DFIs), Finance Companies (FCs) and Bureaux de Change (BDCs)
The CBN had in 2012 required all banks and other financial institutions under its purview to render various AML/CFT returns in prescribed formats and at appropriate periods in line with extant AML/CFT laws and regulations.
The circular reads, “ for the avoidance of doubt, it must be reiterated that the relevant provisions of the Money Laundering Prohibition Act 2011 (as amended) and CBN AML/CFT Regulations, 2013, require Banks and Other Financial Institutions (OFIs) to render various returns to the CBN and Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU),”it said.
The returns according to CBN include Currency Transaction Reports (CTRs), Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs),Foreign Currency Transaction Reports (FTRS), Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) among others.
It however gave failure to render statutory returns and comply with regulatory directives will attract appropriate sanctions including the revocation of operating licence, the circular by CBN added.