Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (#NFIU): Agency That Nailed #Magu

Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (#NFIU): Agency That Nailed #Magu

The agency is not as well known like others such as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission or the ICPC. Yet, it is one of the most potent and effective bodies working in the sphere of money laundering and related offences. Originally part of EFCC, the NFIU is eventually the undoing of Ibrahim Magu, embattled suspended Chairman of the EFCC.

There is a strong reason for criminals to be careful. Reports virtually exist on high financial fraudulent deals in the country and even beyond. No major corruption scandal is beyond the surveilance of the NFIU. The decision on what to do with such reports is that of frontline agencies.

But Nigerians know so little about this shadowy body under Modibbo Hamman Tukur. May be if financial criminals are fully aware, corrupt conduct will reduce.

The Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) is the central national agency responsible for the receipt of disclosures from reporting organisations, the analysist of these disclosures and the production of intelligence for dissemination to competent authorities. The NFIU is an autonomous unit, domiciled within the Central Bank of Nigeria and the central coordinating body for the country’s Anti-Money Laundering, Counter-Terrorist Financing and Counter-Proliferation Financing (AML/CFT/CPF) framework.

It was formally established in 2004 and became operational in 2005 as a unit of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). In 2018, the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (Establishment) Act transformed the Unit into an autonomous and independent agency domiciled with the Central Bank of Nigeria.It is an administrative type FIU, which draws its powers from the 2018 NFIU Act, the 2012 Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act (ML(P)A) as amended and the 2013 Terrorism (Prevention) Act (T(P)A).

The agency is the Secretariat of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing (IMC) , the national coordination body for the country’s strategy to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. The Unit is also the Secretariat of the National Sanctions Committee (NSC) chaired by the Honourable Attorney-General and Minister of Justice of the Federation which is responsible for the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolutions to combat global crime.

The core mandate of the NFIU as enshrined in the NFIU Act, ML(P)A and T(P)A include the following:

1. Receipt of suspicious transaction reports from reporting entities including financial institutions and designated non-financial businesses and professionals.

2. Receipt of threshold based transaction reports from reporting entities

3. Analysis of the received information, including connecting and accessing local and international databases to enrich the reports

4. Dissemination of the resulting intelligence reports to law enforcement, anti-corruption, security, intelligence agencies as well as regulatory and supervisory bodies for further investigation and prosecution.

The NFIU is also empowered to:

1. Advise law enforcement, regulatory and supervisory agencies on prevention and combatting of money laundering ,terrorist financing and predicate offences.

2. Exchange information with other FIUs and designated international organisations to combat and prevent global crimes

3. Conduct research into emerging threats of money laundering, terrorist financing and other predicate offences.

4. Strengthen compliance with domestic and international anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing standards of reporting entities

Director of NFIU

Mr. Modibbo R. Hamman Tukur is an expert on foreign intelligence exchange, Asset recovery and International Relations with over 20 years of experience. Professionally, Mr Modibbo has a wealth of diversified professional experiences. From 1993 to 1999, he served as an administrative officer and special assistant to the Managing Director of Finetex Limited, a private company.

The Director/Chief Executive also worked in the Adamawa State Government from 1999 to June 2003 as a personal assistant and principal secretary in the Office of the Deputy Governor of the state; his responsibilities included coordinating the day to day activities of the deputy governor and monitoring the execution of government projects. The Director of the NFIU is very familiar with the institution having served as a Financial Intelligence / Transaction Analyst and Bank Compliance Examiner from March 2005 to January 2006. Within the NFIU, from January 2006 to November 2011, he was Head Strategic Partnership and International Relations (SPIR) at the NFIU.

He has served as an assessor to evaluate law enforcement institutions of the Republic of Gambia alongside World Bank and IMF Officials in May/June 2007

Adding to his vast knowledge within the AML/CFT sector, from November 2011 to June 2017, he was Head International Affairs (External Cooperation) at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for a period of Six (6) years. As part of his job schedule at the EFCC, he facilitated all international cases in areas of exchange of intelligence, information, investigation, prosecution and Asset Recovery for the EFCC. He also managed Development partner EFCC projects for the World Bank, UNODC, DFID, US State Department, ECOWAS/GIABA etc, and all forms and issues of bilateral and multilateral support.

In June 2017 he was redeployed back to the NFIU as an Assistant Director (AD) where he oversaw the Legal and Cooperation Department until his appointment as the Director of the NFIU

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