Media Statement: The Helen Suzman Foundation Makes Submissions on the General Laws (Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorism Financing) Amendment Bill

The Helen Suzman Foundation (“HSF”) provided submissions to Parliament's Finance Committee following an invitation to comment on the General Laws (Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Terrorism Financing) Amendment Bill (“Bill”).

The Bill which proposes to amend the Nonprofit Organisations Act 71 of 1997, among other laws, has been presented in an attempt to address concerns raised by the Financial Action Task Force (“FATF”), a global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog, and specifically the possibility of South Africa being greylisted which would make the conduct of business more difficult.

The HSF recognises that National Treasury has expressed an intention to amend the Bill’s requirement of mandatory registration for all non-profit organisations (“NPOs”) and that it now proposes adopting a risk-based approach that would only require selective NPOs to register.

However, National Treasury has not amended the Bill to reflect its intention nor withdrawn the Bill. Accordingly, the HSF made objection to the currently formulated registration requirements of the Bill, among other submissions made.

In addition, the HSF submitted that even if National Treasury had made such amendments to the Bill, it would be advisable, if not required, to re-publish the Bill for public comment given the potential for significant impact upon NPOs and their interest in the matter.

Finally, the HSF draws attention to the fact that the Department for Social Development has published the Draft Non-Profit Organisation Amendment Bill (“Draft NPO Bill”) for comment. The HSF is concerned for this concurrent process as not only are the two Bills contradictory as currently read, but it seems counter-productive not to implement an integrated approach in managing the two Bills. The HSF intends making submissions on the Draft NPO Bill by the stated deadline.


Read the full submission here

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Nicole Fritz