NSE: House Summons Oteh, Okereke-Onyiuke, Dangote


By Goddy Egene and Onwuka Nzeshi in Abuja, 08.07.2010


The House of Represe-ntatives yesterday waded into the crisis plaguing the Nigerian Stock Exchange, summoning the director general of the Securities and Exchange Commission Ms Arunma Oteh, former director general of the Nigerian Stock Exchange Prof. Ndi Okereke- Onyiuke and business mogul Aliko Dangote. The trio have been asked to appear before the Committee on Capital Markets and Institutions next Tuesday. 


The invitation by the House committee came just as the administrator appointed by SEC Thu-rsday to temporarily oversee the Stock Exchange Emmanuel Ikhazoboh, swung into action in line with his promise to restore investor confidence and integrity in the market.Chairman of the committee on Capital Markets and Institutions Umar Buba Jibril said yesterday in an interview that Ikhazoboh has also been invited to meet with the lawmakers with a view to addressing the issues behind the current crisis and exploring avenues to resolving them.  


The committee, Jibril said, has been monitoring activities in the capital market and was in total support of the recent decisions taken by the regulatory agency as it will restore sanity to the sector. He said that given the place of the Nigeria Stock Exchange in the economy, it will be wrong for parliament to fold its arms and allow the confidence of investors in the capital market to be eroded through the actions or inactions of its administrators.  


“By Tuesday we are going to meet with the ex and new administrator and by Wednesday we will be inviting the SEC, Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke, Alhaji Aliko Dangote and other stakeholders. By next week we will inform the nation on what is going on. “We are have been watching and observing keenly, we have been collating information about developments in the capital market keenly and we want to assure the Nigerian public, particularly investors both local and foreign, that the situation is under control. 


“Certain decisions have been taking by SEC and we believe these decisions are in the best interest of the nation. As the committee, we are doing our best to get to the root of the matter,” he said. He acknowledged that the recent intervention in the capital market  would definitely  have a shocking effect, but  was confident that the market will bounce back as soon as possible. He noted that there have been several reform initiatives in the sector in the past but lamented that it has been difficult implementing some of the reforms.  


“We want to assure Nigerians that we are going to do our duty as a House. We represent the common people of this country and we shall not shy away from conducting a proper investigation to get to the root of the matter but we must not lose sight of the fact that things must be done properly. “All the parties involved must be treated fairly and at the end of the day, Nigerians will have cause to smile.”He asked investors not to lose confidence in the market, advising “they should not panic because the crisis will soon be over.”  


Meanwhile, following a series of meetings with the management staff and senior stockbrokers on how to move the capital market Thursday when he assumed duty, Ikhazoboh   moved to stabilise the market yesterday and assure management of his commitment to restore confidence.


Ikhazobor spent several hours yesterday meeting with senior management staff in their individual offices apparently in a move to chart the way forward for the recovery of the market.Ikhazobor, a forensic auditor and former managing partner of Akintola Williams Deloitte, had assured stakeholders that he would restore investor confidence to the beleaguered market.


“My responsibility is an interim one and it is to ensure that we stop the slide, ensure that integrity is restored to the market place and ensure that the back office is put back into shape,” he said.In an apparent move to ensure he delivers on his promise, Ikhazabor   swung into action by going from one top management officer to the other yesterday.Sources in the Stock Exchange confirmed that he had a meeting for over three hours with the General Manager, Strategy/New Products Mr. Farooq Oreagba. 


It was gathered that the meeting was fruitful because Ikhazobor and Oreagba emerged from the closed-door session wearing broad smiles on their faces on the 23rd floor of the Stock Exchange House.SEC appointed Ikhazoboh after effecting the removal   of Okereke-Onyiuke last Wednesday over allegations of financial mismanagement and impropriety in the NSE made by Dangote.  


A senior stockbroker who   was at the  first meeting with the interim administrator on Thursday expressed confidence in the man, saying that given what he said at the meeting with us, he is going to deliver.“He is an independent person and we told him that he should be transparent in handling this task because all eyes are on him. “The senior brokers have already assured him of our support because we want the market to move forward,” the broker said.


Trading at the stock market yesterday closed positively with the value of investment rising 123 percent while the NSE All-Share Index inched up 0.1 percent to close at 25,738.79. Similarly market capitalisation rose by N6 billion to N6.295 trillion. Investors staked N2.06 billion on 201.126 million shares in 6,394 deals yesterday up from N926 million invested in 184.442 million shares in 1,882 deals the previous day.Unlike the previous day when the trading engine developed a technical fault, trading went smoothly yesterday.





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