The Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA) will organise the 9th Edition of its Open House Forum at the Paradise Suites Hotel in Banjul, The Gambia, on Tuesday, July 26, 2016. The objective of the Open House Forum is to mobilize youths against organized crime, including money laundering (ML) and terrorist financing (TF), by targeting their attitudes, behaviors and beliefs. The 2016 Edition will also provide an opportunity for youths to embark on advocacy by helping to disseminate anti- money laundering and counter financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) messages to their peers and political decision-makers, thereby becoming important policy advocates.
Organised crime, has become a major threat to development and security in the region. Protecting the youths and guaranteeing them a future in an economically prosperous region have become priorities for ECOWAS in the wake of regional integration. Developing the capacity of the youth and empowering them for future leadership would require concerted efforts at both national and individual levels. These youths therefore need to be educated and sensitized to the essence of combating organized crime in all its forms and ramifications.
In its efforts to involve all stakeholders in the fight against money laundering/terrorist fianancing in West Africa, GIABA has been organising Open House Fora for youths since 2007. The outcomes of the previous editions revealed a huge gap, in terms of capacity, among the various strata in the society on issues relating to AML/CFT, hence the need to improve on capacity building for youths in member States in order to enhance their understanding of AML/CFT regimes, thereby positioning them as champions of good governance.
Over one hundred youths are expected to attend the 9th Edition on the theme “The Role of Youths in Combating Transnational Organized Crime.” The target audience of the Open House will be youths from universities and institutions of higher learning, sports and cultural associations, youth groups and religious associations. Other secondary beneficiaries will include representatives of civil society organisations and associations, banks, insurance companies, media houses, the diplomatic corps, etc.
At the end of the event in Banjul, it is expected that the youths would constitute a well-organized and highly sensitized alliance against money laundering/terrorist financing; that the number laundering/terrorist financing of people, particularly youths, that have a thorough understanding of the consequences of would increase; and that there would be more effective collaboration in AML/CFT efforts.
GIABA Press release