By our reporter
“The fight against illicit financial flows requires concerted effort by all stakeholders and that would facilitate the detection of the vice, investigation and prosecution of offenders,’
Officials made the observation while addressing participants in a daylong prosecutors’ symposium today at Hotel Africana in Kampala.
The conference was themed, “The Fight Against Illicit Financial Flows in Uganda” and it was organized by the Legal Services and Board Affairs (LSBA) department of Uganda Revenue Authority (URA).
In opening remarks, the Commissioner General, Doris Akol highlighted the impact of illicit financial flows (IFFs) on countries.
“They facilitate transnational organized crime, foster corruption, undermine governance, and decrease tax revenues. Illicit financial flows pose a great challenge to political and economic security around the world particularly in developing countries like Uganda,” Akol stated.
Quoting a 2015 report on IFFs, she said Africa lost over US$1.4 trillion over the past three years. This amounted to US$80bn lost annually.
“We need to work towards a common goal to tackle illicit financial flows, which require collaboration on investigation, prosecution and addressing weaknesses in our legal regimes that make us susceptible to these activities,” Akol stated.
Representing the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Barbara Kawuma, a Principal State Attorney, appreciated URA for routinely sharing information on companies under investigation.
The Directorate of Public Prosecution, she pointed out, uses a multi-pronged approach including prosecution and asset recovery in the continued fight against IFFs.
LSBA Commissioner, Patience Tumusiime Rubagumya said the meetings offer an opportunity to “share ideas and discuss developments in criminal law and look at new trends”.
IFFs, she added, are a global challenge, which Uganda is not immune to.