[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Parliamentary Select Committee on the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AMLCFT) Amendment Bill, met again on Tuesday night (March 25) but failed to make any positive headway.
According to Minister within the Ministry of Finance, Juan Edghill, the entire meeting was spent “looking at what can best be described as the reformulation of Mr. (Carl) Greenidge’s proposal or amendments”, the Government Information Agency noted.
Minister Edghill said, at the previous meeting the draft amendments were looked at by the committee but Mr. Greenidge asked for some time to reformulate the proposed amendment and to submit that to the Chief Parliamentary Counsel.
“The Chief Parliamentary Counsel having received those instructions and that formulation put out a new draft, and today we looked at that draft, but again there is still need for another reformulation of that second draft,” he said.
“There is still need for another reformulation because he (Mr. Greenidge) is still thinking and while he is thinking it seems to be an unending process of trying to put some administrative structure in place that will satisfy the requirements of the international standard which we have not yet gotten right”.
This, the Minister said will make the third reformulated draft of the APNU’s proposed amendments which will be brought before the committee.
In addition, the Minister said, interestingly the tone of the committee has changed, as there is more willingness on the part of the opposition to listen.
“They are listening after they would have discovered that their amendments as proposed are in the original format …they are proving to be extremely troublesome and the practical working out of it has not been properly visualised and contextualised and reformulated.”
In February, the APNU proposed three major amendments to the Principal Act of the AML&CFT Bill. Among the amendments are for Police and Customs Officers to have the power to seize currency worth over $2M (US$10,000) and arrest persons if it is suspected that it is the proceeds of or the subject of money laundering. That amount has since been amended to $10M.
Additionally, APNU also proposed that the Finance Minister no longer have the power to appoint the Director of Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and be placed in a committee of the National Assembly.
They further proposed the establishment of an authority comprising 10 persons nominated by the National Assembly after consulting with stakeholders.