Money remittance firm Dahabshiil is scaling up its efforts against money laundering as it eyes a bigger share of lucrative money remittance market.
Staff of the firm from across the country were on Friday evening taken through intensive training in anti-money laundering in Nairobi to help them stop the vice more effectively.
The training focused on spotting and flagging suspicious transactions as well as proper identification and assessment of clients so as to lock out proceeds from money laundering and other crimes.
Dahabshiil CEO Abdi Mohammed said capacity building of Dahabshiil staff is in line with its compliance obligations to the Proceeds of Crime and Anti-Money Laundering Act.
“We are investing heavily in enhancing the capacity of our staff against money laundering. They are the ones to implement and maintain our comprehensive anti-money laundering processes that are in place,” he said.
He added: “We are working closely with regulators of financial institutions in Kenya and other countries to minimise and eliminate any loopholes that money launderers can exploit to move their ill-gotten cash.”
Dahabshiil is one of the largest money remittance providers in Kenya and was first licensed by Central Bank of Kenya in 2013 and has outlets across 144 countries including in Europe and North America.
All financial institutions in the country are required to report suspicious transactions to the Financial Reporting Centre, a government body mandated to identify proceeds of crime and combat money laundering.
Anti-money laundering specialist Dishon Kirima, who conducted the training said implementing rigorous systems against the crime is good for financial institutions since it enhances public and government confidence and attracts more legitimate business.
He called on the government to ensure all financial institutions in Kenya comply fully to anti-money laundering regulations in order to have a level playing field for all players in the sector.
A recent report by the US government on money laundering and narcotics indicated that Kenya has made strides against money laundering but remains vulnerable to the crime.
“There is also need to enhance awareness of customers about the importance of complying with relevant procedures when conducting financial transactions in money remittance firms,” he said.
He added: “It is in their best interest and safety to comply so as to isolate the few persons seeking to misuse financial services for criminal activities.
By Ally Jamah