General

GIABA trains journalists on economic and financial crimes

The Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA) is organizing a 3-day Regional Training Workshop for Journalists on Investigating Economic and Financial Crimes in Accra, Ghana, from 21st to 23rd February 2022.

The Workshop, which shall hold in hybrid mode, will take place at the Alisa Hotel, Accra, Ghana.

The event is expected to bring together journalists from across ECOWAS member States comprising print, electronic, and online media organisations focusing on investigative journalism.

The workshop is designed to help GIABA to: forge a solid alliance with the media in a concerted manner for the effective dissemination of information on Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) issues; keep the media informed on regional
AML/CFT initiatives, particularly GIABA’s mandate; provide an opportunity for trained journalists to acquire techniques in information gathering and investigation.

Furthermore, the training is to encourage the media to internally nurture the culture of investigation on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (ML/TF) practices and to strengthen the network of journalists in its drive to ensure more effective dissemination of
information on AML/CFT regimes.

The media plays critical roles to promote good governance, ensuring optimal deployment of state resources, facilitating the protection of rights of citizens, and ensuring that corrupt officials and corrupt practices are exposed.

The media also serves as a change agent, particularly as an anti-corruption crusader. Therefore, the importance of the media in disseminating AML/CFT messages cannot be over-emphasized.

Traditionally, at the fore of the implementation of the AML/CFT standards are the law enforcement and regulatory/supervisory agencies.

However, given the immensity of the issues involved, the stakeholders’ base has been deepened and broadened to include non-traditional
entities to ensure a holistic approach and complementarities.

GIABA recognises the critical roles of journalists in the information chain on money laundering and terrorist financing. As the people bearing responsibility for the content of news, editors decide whether to give a story on money laundering and terrorist financing (ML/TF)
prominence or to relegate it.

It would be recalled that GIABA has conducted a series of training and media-oriented programmes towards facilitating the understanding of journalists on AML/CFT issues.

A major outcome of these programmes is the formation of a Regional Network of Journalists involved in reporting economic and financial crimes in May 2010 in Abuja, Nigeria.

The workshop will be delivered by a team of experienced experts and practitioners from the Secretariat and experts through plenary presentations, case studies, experience sharing, syndicate group exercises, and role-plays.

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