Zambia is being peer reviewed by the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti Money Laundering Group to assess the country’s compliance to laws relating to money laundering and terrorism financing.
The assessment report is expected to be out by April next year.
Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo made this disclosure yesterday in Addis Ababa when he transited from Seychelles where he attended an Eastern and Southern Africa Anti Money Laundering Ministers Conference.
The Meeting was also attended by Justice Minister Given Lubinda, Attorney General Likando Kalaluka and Ministry of Finance Permanent Secretary Mukuli Chikaba.
Mr Kampyongo said Government is committed to supporting the AU Amnesty month for the surrender of illegal weapons.
He said Zambia is committed to ensuring that the programme is supported, further announcing that the launch for the voluntary surrender of Arms in Zambia will kick start next week.
’’We are promoting and organizing initiatives for the voluntary surrender of illicit weapons in civilian possession on conditions of anonymity and immunity from prosecution. We are equally developing appropriate evaluation frameworks for assessing the effectiveness of these initiatives at varying stages of implementation of Africa Amnesty Month’ ’, Mr Kampyongo said.
The Minister emphasized that the illicit flow of arms, particularly small arms and light weapons), to non-state actors contributes significantly towards exacerbating insecurity and violence in various parts of Africa, thereby undermining social cohesion, public security, socio-economic development and the effective functioning of state institutions.
He called on the media to play a positive role in publicizing and raising public awareness on the observance of the Africa Amnesty Month.
’’We are happy that the African Union has committed 30,000 dollars for holding two workshops for the media and defence and security personnel in order to increase awareness and sensitization on the Amnesty month,’’ the Minister said.
The 29th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Union, held on 3-4 July 2017, in Addis Ababa, declared the month of September of each year, till 2020, as “Africa Amnesty Month” for the surrender and collection of illicit small arms and light weapons (SALW).