Auditors must be alert for ‘dirty money’ slipping into legitimate businesses – GCCI Head
By Devina Samaroo
Auditors are being urged to move away from mundane compliance checks and become more rigorous in their scrutiny of businesses, particularly to be on alert for the insertion of dirty money into legitimate operations.
This is according to the President of the Georgetown Chambers of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), Deodat Indar who will be leading a discussion on the issue of laundered money and other evolving risks facing organizations during a two-day seminar and workshop hosted by the Institute of Internal Auditors Guyana Chapter.
Indar told reporters, during the opening ceremony of the workshop on Wednesday, that businesses now have to beware of the impacts of money laundering on their operations.
“If a person is laundering money and they decided to buy your goods (from) a legitimate company, then they are brining laundered money into the system … so that process, auditors need to detect that. There needs to be more screening of persons when they’re buying, how they’re buying, the trend of buying; if they used to buy normally $100,000 a month and then suddenly it gone up to $10 million, well somebody should raise an eyebrow,” he explained.
The GCCI Head said auditors have a critical role to play in detecting such irregularities as well as to advice on actions to be taken to mitigate political, financial and sectoral risks.
“The direction of a company matters just as much as the internal workings. So as an auditor, when you are checking the internal workings of a company, you have to check where the company is going too, so you have to evaluate strategy, you have to comment on it, you have to critique on it but for you to do so, you have to be well informed, you have to be trained and you have to be up to date, you have to know what’s going on around you,” Indar explained.
The business executive further urged those in the business community to familiarize themselves with the Anti-Money Laundering Legislation in order to safeguard their operations from potential threats.
“You first have to understand what’s in the act before you can put systems in place to guard against it. I think we are now getting there and just like other countries when these legislation go in, they take a lil time for implementation,” he stated.
The Institute of Internal Auditors is a global professional association with over 185,000 members in more than 90 countries and its mission is to provide dynamic leadership for the global profession of internal auditing. Membership in the Guyana Chapter increased from 25 persons in 2011 to 80 in 2017.