Recent suspension of Mr. Oday Gbreadyee Vaye, Vice President for Compliance and Investigation at the Liberia Bank for Development & Investment (LBDI) based on the recommendation of the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) for violation of the Suspicious Transaction Reporting Regulation (STRs) has given rise for GNN to independently find out and ascertain the facts surrounding the suspension of Mr. Vaye who many described as a committed young Liberian professional.
Information gathered by the GNN dispelled report that Mr. Vaye’s suspension was really based on the facts that he, Vaye actually violated the Suspicious Transaction Reporting Regulation or STRs; it was also noticed that the FIU’s request to the LBDI to suspend its best executive for Compliance and Investigation drew more questions than answers, pondering over the reasons behind his suspension as being ordered by the FIU.
According to information further gathered by the GNN while speaking to financial experts in and outside the LBDI, it was revealed that Mr. Vaye whose professional contributions has given rise for the establishment of the FIU alone with Alex Coffey few years ago was lauded by some employees at the bank for his professional services as one of Liberia’s best compliance officers.
It was also gathered that FIU is trying to capitalize on Mr. Vaye’s alleged failure to file to it Suspicious Transaction Report (STR) after the required time which should have been done within three days, “Mr. Vaye did not commit any crime on this issue as being portrayed by the FIU; his failure not to file the STR on time was due to the death of his mother in Nimba County,” a source at the bank speaking to the GNN who also expressed disappointment on the action of the FIU said.
Mr. Vaye’s professional services at the bank include to ensure that the Bank remain in full compliance with all regulatory and statutory as well as internal policy; Investigate and resolve all complaints from customers to maintain a positive reputation, and report illegal financial activities to proper authorities’ in order to avoid lawsuits. Develop and implement program or policy required for the bank to operate within acceptable standards.
His department also conduct compliance risk assessment to identify areas of non-compliance and initiate solutions to address identified risks, provide guidance to the board of Directors and senior management on compliance matter, provide reports on a regular basis to board of Directors and senior management to keep them updated on progress of compliance operations, and organize training to educate new and existing staff on recent or new development and already existing compliance requirements
However, in a bid to contact the Chief Executive Officer and President of the Bank as to what actually took place that led to the suspension of his Vice President for Compliance and Investigation, Mr. John B.S. Davies who appeared saddened, said he could not comment on the issue, but promised that it will be handled at the highest level.
“FIU arm-twisted the LBDI to suspend its Vice President for Compliance and Investigation, this situation has roamed the career of this young man who actually made an effort for in the setting up of the FIU, he is one of the best that Liberia has,” another financial expert who said he has known Vaye for a long time, and find him to be credible noted during an exclusive interview with the GNN said.
“We are indeed saddened the way this issue is been handled by the FIU, perhaps it could have been handled better way around, I surmised something went wrong on the part of the FIU to have brought this young Liberian banker to public ridicule; I believed FIU has no issue with Mr. Vaye, but rather intended to disparage him professionally, which is not healthy,” this is not good at all for young Liberian professionals, one of the bankers at the LBDI in a chat with the GNN noted.
Efforts by the GNN to contact the head of the FIU, Mr. Edwin Harris immediately after the interview with financial experts proved unsuccessful, as his mobile line was said to be busy.