After four years of abeyance, the Federal Government yesterday inaugurated the board of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
At the occasion in Abuja, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Finance, Mahmoud Isa-Dutse, who is also overseeing the office of the Minister of Finance, urged listed firms to imbibe good corporate governance and accountability in a bid to accelerate the growth of the capital market and increase both domestic and foreign investor participation.
He stated that the inauguration was coming at a time many players in the market were perpetrating weak corporate governance practices that could potentially dampen investor’s confidence and undermine the steady gains recorded since the 2008 stock market crash.
Isa-Dutse therefore challenged the board members to play their own part as crucial enablers in the industry towards advancing a common vision for the growth and revitalisation of the market.
“The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is committed to transparency and accountability in corporate governance. To this end, I must emphasise that the role of governing boards is to provide effective oversight and strategic advisory to management teams. I would therefore like to advise all concerned to study and strictly adhere to laid down laws that have clearly defined the roles and responsibilities of the board members,” he added.
According to him, to sustain the growth recorded so far in the market, there is need to restore investor’s confidence and entrench a high level of transparency in all processes.
Isa-Dutse said the market must be characterised by high levels of liquidity, depth, breath and sophistication with a strong domestic investor for competitiveness.
Chairman of the board, Olufemi Lijadu, stressed the importance of the stock market to the socio-economic development of any nation.
In her remarks, Acting Director General of the SEC, Mary Uduk, noted that the investiture of the board would help stabilise the market.