Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Managing Director Lamido Yuguda, in an interview with OLUSHOLA BELLO, said the commission is committed to deepening the commodity trading ecosystem in Nigeria..
Ponzi schemes are popping up every day. What is your Commission doing to stem the tide?
The Commission has adopted a series of measures, including the posting of the list of authorized capital market operators on our website, so that any interested investor can check on our website whether the program in which he intends to invest ‘investing is really a registered operator. by the SEC.
Unfortunately, many Ponzi scheme operators, once they make some tempting promises, attract so many valuable investors and in the end money is actually lost and these investors start running around our offices. to complain. The Commission continues its campaign against illegal operators in the capital market, in particular those promoting ponzi schemes, and has adopted multi-level commitments with media platforms and regulators of advertising agencies to curb abuses. activities of these illegal operators.
As we continue to work to resolve complaints that have been forwarded to the Commission through official channels, it is important to remind the investing public to beware of unscrupulous programs that promise unrealistic returns on investment. It is an ongoing struggle; we are not relying on our oars on this and we also urge the media to help disseminate this information.
What efforts has the Commission made to deepen the commodity trading ecosystem?
We encourage investment in raw materials and work with the Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON), the National Insurance Commission, the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment and the Federal Ministry of Mines and Development steel, among other strategic partners, in this lead. All these commitments aim to encourage investment in this vast area where Nigeria has a comparative advantage over many other countries.
As part of the measures to deepen the commodity ecosystem, the Commission has made commitments with the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) to reduce risk and insure certain commodity assets, which we believe , will attract more investment in the space, in particular from the pension sector. A technical committee, comprising representatives from the Commission, SON, AFEX, Lagos Commodities and Futures Exchange (LCFE) and Nigerian Commodities Exchange (NCX) was also formed to provide agri-food standards within three months.
Can we have an update on the current number of mandated accounts?
Since the creation of the e-dividend portal which was in 2016 until July 2021, the total of mandated and approved accounts is 1,144,970. It is in July 2021. This is the total number of mandated accounts. Last year’s COVID-19 issue affected the record.
What is the current unclaimed dividend situation?
The truth is, we have identity management issues in the Nigerian capital market and this is one of the things the Commission has tried to address. In June 2021, the Commission established an Identity Management Committee for the Nigerian Capital Market. The committee is chaired by Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede and is expected to harmonize various investor databases and facilitate the accuracy of market data.
We are confident that the outcome of this committee’s mission will address the challenges of identity management and help resolve some of the issues we face in the areas of unclaimed dividends, direct cash settlement and multiple subscriptions. There are people who have bought stocks under fake names before, which is what we call the multiple subscription problem.
Most things became a problem after the introduction of BVN, as BVN is tied to one name. if you have another name that you used before, no account will be opened for you and these accounts will not be accepted by your bankers. God only now knows how many bank accounts in the bank cannot be connected to BVN simply because they cannot be traced back to the owners.
Therefore, the registration portal was extended until August 31, 2021. This was to allow operators who had not yet updated their information with the Commission to do so before the end of the new deadline.
What other steps is the SEC taking to reduce unclaimed dividends?
As part of the measures aimed at increasing the number of investors mandated on e-DMMS and reducing the quantum of unclaimed dividends, CMC members have adopted the following measures: automating the mandate in e-DMMS; increase monitoring of compliance with procedures; increase awareness campaigns on the initiative; a training session to be organized by the Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS); which will be supported by the e-DMMS technical committee, the Institute of Capital Market Registrars (ICMR) and the Association of Securities Dealing Houses of Nigeria (ASHON); conducting a study to determine the ability of CSCS to handle dividends from investors in unlisted companies.