Operators Seek FG Intervention In Oando Saga


Capital market operators last week called for urgent intervention of the Federal Government in the conflict between the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Oando Plc.
They made the call in interviews with The Tide source in Lagos
They reacted to the outcome of a forensic audit on Oando  released by SEC  on May 31, as well as a court injunction restraining SEC from sacking Oando’s Group Chief Executive  Officer (GCEO), Mr Adewale Tinubu, and his deputy.
The operators applauded the courage of SEC’s Acting Director-General, Ms Mary Uduk,  in releasing the outcome of the forensic audit.
Reports say that following the outcome of the forensic audit,  SEC on June 2 constituted an interim management team to be headed by Mr Mutiu Sunmonu for Oando Plc.
It said in a statement that Sunmonu would oversee the affairs the company and conduct an Extra Ordinary General Meeting (EGM) on or before July 1, to appoint new board of directors.
The commission said that the new board of directors  would subsequently select a management team for Oando Plc.
The commission reiterated its commitment to maintaining the integrity of the market.
However,  a Federal High Court in Lagos on June 3,  granted an interim injunction restraining SEC from executing the interim management in Oando.
The court injunction followed an application filed by Tinubu and his deputy, Mr Omamofe Boyo.
Tinubu and Boyo applied for the enforcement of their fundamental rights.
The court also restrained SEC  from imposing a fine of N91.13 million on Tinubu,  and barring him and Boyo from being directors of public companies for five years.
The Chief Operating Officer, InvestData Ltd., Mr Ambrose Omordion said that the Federal  Government would  need to intervene in the matter to safeguard investors’ confidence.
Omordion said that the unfolding events between Oando and SEC could  dampen investors confidence and tamper with Nigeria’s integrity.
He said that the international investment community was watching to see the manner the Oando issue would be handled.
“The way SEC and government will handle this issue will go a long way to determine the success of the nation’s drive for financial inclusion and attraction of new retail investors and foreign investors returning to the market,” Omordion state.
He also urged the government to strengthen the commission by ensuring appointment of its board members soon.
Omordion expressed disappointment that SEC had been operating without board for about four years and had been with an acting director-general for over a year.
Publicity Secretary, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria Mr Moses Igbrude alleged that shareholders had suffered enough loss in Oando with no dividend and poor market pricing.
Igbrude said that court injunction could lead to long legal battles which could further affect the company’s shares price on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
He urged the exchange to place the share price on technical suspension to protect investors from further loss.