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Amendments to Financial Crimes legislation before August 10 no longer possiblell amendments before August 10th no longert possible

shot0009Such amendments would not be possible since the Bill, now before a Special Select Committee, has been adjourned to October after the Parliamentary recess.

If the Bill is not passed it is more than likely that Guyana runs the risk of being blacklisted and excluded from important activities on financial crime. The amendment to the legislation is aimed at bringing the country in conformity with certain international standards.

Guyana was granted an extension until November when the next meeting of the Caribbean Financial Task Force is expected to meet.

A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) has identified a major concern of the party to be the matter related to the appointment and function of the Financial Intelligence Unit which the Bill, once enacted, will make provision for.

In a press statement APNU said with regards to the appointment of the Head of the Financial Intelligence Unit the party feels that it was too important an appointment to be left in the hands of the Minister of Finance.

APNU feels that such an arrangement would facilitate the escape of friends of the administration from sanctions which the law makes provision for. The Opposition Party believes that the current administration is obsessed with control and they cannot be allowed to interfere with such an important piece of legislation.

Finance Minister Dr. Ashni Singh who was quoted by the Government Information Agency (GINA) saying that the Opposition’s delay of the money laundering amendments was unconscionable.

The Finance Minister is holding out that the Bill has been in the hands of the Opposition for several months and had benefited from detailed scrutiny in the Special Select Committee.  The Minister pointed out that the Opposition is well aware that in order to achieve the international deadline given to Guyana, it would have been advisable for the amendments to be enacted before the recess.

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