Uganda To Intensify The Crackdown On Terrorist Funding Done Through Small Legitimate Business And Mobile Money Transfers

The Uganda authorities have announced that it is starting a crackdown on illicit financial flows that are being used to channel funds for various terror networks in the country. According to them, the networks use huge volumes of small transactions to funnel especially through mobile money transfer avenues that face minimal surveillance enabling swift movement of money to fund terror activities and groups. Terrorist organizations usually run small restaurants, fuel stations, and transport companies.

Between June 2016 and September 2017 seven suspicious transactions were reported by the financial sector, according to Financial Intelligence Authority (FIA). Commercial banks reported all but one of the cases, which was filed by a remittance company. The transactions are under investigation.

According to an FIA official, terrorism financing is harder to tackle, compared with money laundering, because it is channeled through legitimate channels like mobile money services and involves small amounts, estimated at less than $1,000 per transaction.

Major sources of terrorist risks for Uganda include Somalia and the Democratic Republic of Congo, war-torn countries that have created a safe haven for terror groups.

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