PSC to meet members to continue lobby for anti-laundering bill

The Private Sector Com-mission (PSC) plans to convene a meeting of around 500 businesses to bolster its attempts to convince policy makers to take whatever actions are necessary for passage of the Anti-Money Laundering/ Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) (Amendment) Bill.

“We have exhausted all other options,” PSC executive Ramesh Dookhoo lamented yesterday, after legislators were unable to even consider the bill, which was supposed to be passed by today.

Dookhoo said that next week’s meeting will determine the next move of the PSC, which is contemplating various forms of affirmative action at its disposal.

He also slated parliamentarians of the National Assembly as a “hopeless bunch” for failing to pass the amendment bill before the deadline.

Responding to the news last evening, Dookhoo said that the PSC, though disappointed about the news, was not at all surprised since the uncompromising posture of A Partnership for National Unity (APNU), the Alliance for Change (AFC) and the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) going into yesterday’s sitting spoke volumes.

He said that during a meeting between government and the two opposition parties earlier this week, all sides made their demands clear, and articulated that they are not going to budge. Against this background, he said, “The PSC is caught in a place where it is helpless.”

The non-passage of the bill means that Guyana misses the February 28th deadline set by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) by which it was required to pass the bill. CFATF Financial Advisor Roger Hernandez, during a visit to Guyana last week, said that failing to meet the deadline could see Guyana subjected to adverse measures.

Dookhoo said that it is time for Guyana’s political leaders to understand that they are not the ones with investments in Guyana, and therefore at risk of suffering sizable losses as a result of once again being found non-compliant by CFATF and the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

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