FIU Clarifies OMEGA Insurance’s Concerns
The President and Chief of the Omega Insurance Group Limited, Gajay Ananaba, disclosed that, following a series of meeting between his insurance company and the Financial Intelligent unit (FIU), the FIU administration has addressed and clarified most of Omega’s concerns with respect to its CTR and STR reporting obligation under the Financial Intelligent Unit Act of 2012 and its accompanying regulation.
Unlike other reporting entities/insurance companies, the FIU had accused Omega of refusing and failing to file STRs and CTRs with it, as required by law, and that Omega had also refused and failed to allow the FIU to inspect and examine its books and records, contrary to law and for reasons known to it. The FIU said this non-compliance was continual, inappropriate and a basis of suspicion on the part of Omega and its Managing Director, Ganjay L. Ananaba.
FIU, at the time, said that Ananaba and OMEGA displayed not only a hostile and arrogant posture toward the rule of law and blatant refusal to meet their statutory obligation, but were also preventing regulators from carrying out statutory mandates, thereby creating huge vulnerabilities in Liberia’s financial space for obvious personal gain.
But, in a statement issued under the signature of the President and Chief of the Omega Insurance Group Limited, Gajay Ananaba, with the provision of these needed clarifications by the FIU and the management of Omega Insurance Limited reaffirms its continuous compliance with its reporting obligation.
The statement indicated that Omega looks forward to a cordial and meaningful relationship with the FIU and remains fully committed to honoring all lawful obligation required of it by the FIU and all relevant government agencies as it relates to compliance.
The statement further said that, as advised by the FIU on June 24,2022,”Omega Insurance Group as a non-bank financial institution subject to applicable AML/CFT laws and regulations of Liberia, the company is in substantial compliance with the aforementioned measures and prepared to improve where deficient.”
The statement noted that the FIU also overly welcomes and ascertains the AM/CFT compliance level of the company.
It can be recalled that, as part of its statutory mandate and authority, the FIU provides supervision of preventive measures over banks and non-bank financial institutions, as well as Designated Non-Financial Business and Professions (DNFBPs) for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorists (AML/CFT) purposes.
The FIU Act of 2012, Section 67.5, requires the institution to, among other things, inspect and examine records, ensure that reporting entities, including banks, insurance companies, etcetera, file Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs) and Cash Transactions Reports (CTRs) as mandatory reporting obligations, and also be subjected to AML/CFT oversight, regulation and supervisions.
The FIU is further required to monitor and enforce compliance with filings and other AML/CFT obligations by reporting entities; otherwise, failure to comply could lead to the application of a wide range of sanctions as provided for according to law.
The FIU noted, at the time, that for the record the Omega Group of Insurance Limited (OMEGA) and its Managing Director Ganjay L. Ananaba had blatantly refused and failed to comply with AML/CFT reporting obligations, inspections and examinations.