November 28, 2010
The attention of the Securities and Exchange Commission (the Commission) has been drawn to the erroneous publications in some national dailies with respect to the management of the finances of the Commission.Contrary to the erroneous publication , the Commission is recognized as one of the most financially disciplined public institutions in Nigeria. In addition to the external auditors of the Commission, the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation conducts routine audits of the accounts of the Commission. The National Assembly through its committees on capital market also carries out rigorous oversight of the Commission.
The Commission has a robust internal control system to safeguard its assets and ensure at all times the accuracy and reliability of its financial records. Its prudent financial management has enabled the Commission, in the last five (5) years, to invest in major capital projects such as the purchase of its Head Office in Abuja, its Lagos Zonal Office located in the heart of Victoria Island and the Nigerian Capital Market Institute in Abuja.
Section 27 of the Investments and Securities Act (ISA) 2007, an act of the National Assembly, mandates the Commission to submit its audited financial statements to the National Assembly and the Minister of Finance no later than 31st March every year, in other words, three months after the end of its financial year. In addition, Section 26 of the Act requires the Commission toforward an estimate of its income and expenditure for the succeeding year to the National Assembly and the Minister of Finance by 30th September of the current year. The Commission has never failed to carry out these statutory duties and in fact audited financial statements for the 2009 financial year were duly submitted on 31st March 2010 while the estimated 2011 budget of the Commission was submitted to the National Assembly and the Minister of Finance on September 30, 2010. The details of the Commission’s audited financial statements are available to the public and on www.sec.gov.ng, the Commission’s website.
Even with the downturn in the capital market which led to significant reduction in the revenue of all stakeholders, the Commission has continued to effectively discharge its statutory functions. As the apex regulator of the Nigerian capital markets, it is leading reforms aimed at restoring investor confidence and protecting the ordinary shareholder.
The Commission, along with the Financial Services Board of South Africa, isone of the only two African appendix ‘A’ signatory to the Multilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MMOU) of International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO). It is also the chair of Africa and Middle East Regional Committee (AMERC) of the 183 member global body, and strives to adhere to international principles of securities regulation which emphasizes operational independence and accountability for regulators. The Commission is commited to building a world class capital market that is transparent, accountable and internationally competitive.
The Commission wishes to state that no amount of intimidation or campaign of calmuny will deter it or its Director General from carrying out its statutory mandate under the Investments and Securities Act (ISA) 2007.
The Securities & Exchange Commission remains committed to the protection of investors, regulation and development of the Nigerian Capital Market, strict adherence to good corporate governance and zero tolerance for market infractions. The ongoing reforms in the capital market may be tough but the Commission remains optimistic that the market and indeed the economy will be better for it.