The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Sunday said the bill setting up new Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) as an Independent Body will be passed this week.
Using his official Twitter handle on Sunday, the Senate President said he will meet with the Conference Committee on NFIU Bill to ensure quick passage of the bill.
“Following my meeting on Thursday with Speaker @YakubDogara, the Chairman @NGRSenate Committee on Anti-Corruption and @HouseNGR Chairman on Financial Crimes, the Conference Committee meeting for the NFIU Bill will hold tomorrow and the Report presented in both Chambers on Tuesday.
“I am confident that we will pass the NFIU Bill this week,” Saraki said in his tweet.
Many Nigerians have long awaited the passage of the bill. The anxiety was intensified after the Chairman Senate Committee on Anti-corruption, Chukwuka Utazi, accused House of Representatives committee on anti-corruption of lackadaisical attitude, stalling the NFIU bill.
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Utazi on Thursday, March 1 said the House of Representatives is hindering the progress of the bill by his failure to attend scheduled meetings to fine-tune the bill.
Nigeria risks removal from global body of Financial Intelligence Units (Egmont Group) if NFIU fails to grant autonomy by March 11
It is believed that if the nation fails to put it acts together this week and get a harmonised bill by both chambers of the National Assembly, Nigeria will be expelled by the Egmont Group of 156 members of Financial Intelligent Units (FIUs).
The Egmont Group is a united body of 155 Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) and it provides a platform for the secure exchange of expertise and financial intelligence to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.
The group reportedly demanded autonomy for the NFIU as a condition for the suspension to be lifted, failing which Nigeria would be expelled in 2018.
The expulsion Utazi explained during plenary on Thursday has dire consequences on Nigeria as financial institutions of the country cannot do anything.
“Our credit cards will no longer amount to anything, Nigeria will be degraded to the high risk nation. Even the corruption perception index we are complaining about is a child’s play to what we are going to face in few days to come,” he said.
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