The Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA) will organize the 5th edition of the Inter-Universities Speech Contest on AML/CFT Impacts on West African Economies on the theme: “Promoting Collective Action against Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing in West Africa” at the Sir Dawda Kairaba Jawara International Conference Centre, The Gambia on December 14, 2022.
Money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/TF) continue to be of main concern to all countries in the world in general and of developing countries in particular. Increased international mobility, technology and finance; combined with the continuing economic crisis, increasing unemployment, spread of social and political tensions, terrorist attacks, among others; make the environment very turbulent and pose a lot of obstacles to the fight against ML/TF.
Despite these adverse and difficult environments, the international community continues to struggle around a well-defined common framework to prevent these economic and financial crimes from inflicting further irreparable harm on the international financial system. Therefore, the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing requires more than ever the collective involvement of all stakeholders.
Thus, the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) today requires, more than ever before, the involvement of all stakeholders. As part of its efforts aimed at ensuring the implementation of effective AML/CFT regimes in its member States, GIABA has identified youths as important segment in the fight against money laundering and corruption.
This is because evidences abound that the youths are highly vulnerable to the risk of money laundering and other related crimes. In the past 15 years, GIABA has creatively engaged the youths and students in the region through a series of awareness and sensitization programmes, such as Open House Forums, Sensitization Campaigns amongst others.
In 2013, GIABA held its maiden Inter-University Speech Contest among undergraduates from the University Community in Accra, Ghana. Since then, GIABA has organized the Speech Contest in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire (2017), Enugu, Nigeria (2019) and Bissau, Guinea Bissau (2021).
The objective of this event is to serve as a platform for promoting knowledge of AML/CFT regimes and the exchange of ideas on topical issues by directing the enormous power of human knowledge as a transformative force for the development of member states.
It will thus be an avenue to mobilize youths against organized crime by providing them with opportunities to research, write and speak on different areas of the AML/CFT framework in West Africa, thus providing an opportunity for youths to embark on advocacy by helping to disseminate AML/CFT messages to their peers and political decision-makers.
Through youth-focused programmes such as the Speech Contest, GIABA ensures that its technical and strategic reports and other outputs such as research, evaluation and other accountability reports are adequately disseminated and used by relevant stakeholders and other target populations i.e. youths, to keep them well informed and elicit desirable responses from them as necessary.
About 100 participants from the University of The Gambia and other institutions of higher learning in The GambiaSir Dawda Kairaba Jawara International Conference Centre, The Gambia at 9.00 am.
The Speech Contest will feature discussions on money laundering, terrorism financing, economic and financial crimes, organized crime, proliferation of small and light weapons, among others and the efforts and strategies aimed at combating them.
At the end of the event, it is expected that youths would form a well-organized and highly sensitized alliance on AML/CFT regimes; that the number of people particularly youths that have a thorough understanding of the consequences of AML/CFT would increase; that there would be more effective collaboration in AML/CFT; and that there would be increased interest in researches into topics on AML/CFT.