The Special Control Unit on Money Laundering (SCUML) is the government agency charged with the responsibility of monitoring, supervising, and regulating the activities of Designated Non-Financial Institutions (DNFIs) in line with the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2011 and the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) 2011.
Is SCUML part of the EFCC?
The Unit was created under the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment but is operationally domiciled within the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The EFCC oversees the supervisory responsibility and it is vested with the checks on financial crimes and terrorism.
What is SCUML Used For?
The regulation of these DNFIs by SCUML is to help to curb money laundering by monitoring closely the funding and financial status of these institutions. SCUML evidences monitoring, supervision, registration of the DNFIs, providing vital information relating to DNFIs money trails to assist criminal investigations etc.
Who needs a SCUML Certificate?
The Designated Non-Financial Organizations require a certificate from the Special Control Unit on Money Laundering. These organizations handle a lot of cash and are typically under scrutiny by AML/CFT regimes because they are easy prey for money laundry and terrorism financing activities.
Businesses that require SCUML registration
- Dealers in jewelry, cars, and luxury goods, precious stones and metals,
- Real estate, Estate Developers, Estate Surveyors and Valuers, Estate Agents,
- Chartered Accountants, Audit Firms, Tax Consultants,
- Clearing and Settlement Companies,
- Hotels, Casinos, Supermarkets,
- Dealers in Mechanized Farming Equipment and Machineries,
- Practitioners of Mechanized Farming,
- Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) or such other businesses as the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment or appropriate regulatory authorities may from time to time designate.
All DNFIs are mandated to register under SCUML so that their activities can be monitored as this is to prevent fraudulent activities. These activities are regarded as transactions, provided it is a service rendered and paid for, i.e. currency (cash transactions).
What documents are required for SCUML?
Before an applicant can proceed with registration with SCUML, certain documents should be scanned for upload depending on the kind of company the applicant operates. The documents are:
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Article and Memorandum of Association
- Tax Clearance Certificate (Not Applicable to NGOs).
- Audited Financial Report
- Authorized Operational License (Not Applicable to NGOs).
- Company/Organization Profile
- Constitution (For NGOs Only)
- Agreement Signed between the NGO and the National Planning Commission ( For International NGOs Only)
Registration for the Special Control Unit on Money Laundering Certificate is an online and offline process.
How to Register with SCUML Online
The steps to be taken to complete registration with SCUML are:
Log on to the SCUML website and click the register online tab.
The page redirects to a registration page where the form is. The form is to be duly filled with correct and up-to-date information. The registration form can be downloaded here.
The required documents are then uploaded to the portal and the application is complete.
Obtaining the SCUML Certificate
Upon successful application by the DNFI, the company is contacted to that effect to pick up the SCUML certificate which is evidence that the business or institution has been duly registered with SCUML. The original copy of the Certificate of Incorporation is to be presented for scrutiny before the certificate can be obtained.
In compliance with the provisions of the various laws and regulations guiding money laundering and financing of terrorist activities, every DNFI is advised to have a Compliance Officer. A Compliance Officer is an officer at the management level who will coordinate AML/CFT activities within the DNFI and liaises with SCUML.
SCUML Registration Office
SCUML has a head office in Abuja and several regional offices. These regional offices are based in Lagos, Enugu, Kano, Port Harcourt, Kano, Gombe, Ibadan, Kaduna, Maiduguri and Uyo.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.