By Ololade julianah,Lagos
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has urged law enforcement agencies to collaborate with the Commission in its quest to ensure zero tolerance on infractions in Nigeria’s Capital Market and also ensure that perpetrators of fraudulent acts are brought to book appropriately.
Director General of SEC, Mounir Gwarzo stated this when he led members of the Management of the Commission on a visit to the Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase in his office in Abuja, Monday.
Gwarzo solicited the support of the IGP to enhance the ongoing co-operation between the Force and the Commission towards ensuring that laid down rules and procedures are adhered to in the capital market.
He appreciated the police on the work they have been doing since the collaboration started and sought for more in areas of specialised discipline such as forensic investigation to enhance the operations of the Capital Market.
In his response, IGP Arase assured the Commission that the Nigerian Police under his leadership will do all that it can to assist the Commission in ensuring that incidents of infractions within the Capital Market are brought to the barest minimum.
He commended the DG SEC on his desire to make the capital market free of malpractices, saying that no nation can develop with the increase in crime and corruption adding that life and property which include tangible and intangible assets must be protected.
He said the inter agency collaboration is in the right direction as both Nigeria Police, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and SEC are committed to deliver mandate of protecting life and property of the people adding that the administration will deal with anybody found defrauding the people in the capital market.
The Investment and Securities Act of 2007, section 304 requires the Commission to refer matters of criminal nature to the appropriate criminal prosecuting authorities including the Nigeria Police.
Some of these infractions include fraudulent disposal of investor assets, illegal fund management, wonder banks, insider dealing, corporate accounting fraud and share manipulation etc.
Despite the great successes with tracking fraudulent practices in the market, the Commission is not resting on its laurels as there are still illegal fund managers, wonder banks and possible cases of market abuse. It is hoped that this synergy with the police will help to significantly reduce, if not totally eradicate these activities to the benefit of investing public.
Recall that in its determination to eradicate crime and malpractices in the Nigerian capital market, the then Inspector General of Police, IGP, Mohammed Abubakar, announced the deployment of 18 policemen to the SEC.
They were deployed to prosecute criminal cases involving capital market activities and ensure that every culprit found wanting is dealt with in accordance with the Investment and Securities Act and laid down regulation.