President of the Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Mr. Sunny Nwosu said President Goodluck Jonathan should work with the National Assembly to resolve Oteh’s crisis.
“The best he could do is to get someone from the Oteh’s catchment area to replace her if they insist she must go,” Nwosu stated Nwosu noted that Oteh had since coming on board ran the SEC as a sole administrator, having operated without a board of directors and does not know what to do with the capital market. ‘She should go,’ Nwosu advised.
He further said Oteh’s lack of respect for shareholders was the fault of government in power, which appointed somebody who does not have any knowledge of the market and had rather refused to learn. Also reacting, another shareholder, Mr. Boniface Okezie said the Nigerian shareholders were in total support of the measures taken by the National Assembly against SEC.
The house was forced to take the step because of Oteh’s stubbornness and highhandedness. They had told the President to remove her; otherwise they would not approve the budget. “If the Presidency thinks that the zero allocation can strangulate the capital market, they should have heeded the call by the National Assembly to remove her.
If the President is still interested in keeping her there, he should look for money elsewhere for her to run the place, Okezie submitted. Meanwhile the President of the Association of Stockbroking Houses of Nigeria (ASHON) Emeka Madubuike, in his reaction wondered how SEC could execute its oversight functions, including payment of staff emoluments in 2013 with zero allocation.
He questioned: “if the National Assembly gives SEC zero-allocation, how do they want the commission to operate. I believe the issue would be resolved one way or another.” An investment analyst and Managing Director of Proshare, Nigeria Limited, Olufemi Awoyemi said: “If we look at the budget for the President, there was a provision for SEC and I believe the House cannot disenfranchise staff of SEC who are also staff of the Federal Government. But I believe the Federal Ministry of Finance must take steps to settle the matter. SEC money is not Oteh’s money and I still think that common sense will prevail somewhere along the line.
“Oteh has some complaints, so also the National Assembly, but I should think that SEC is a critical institution in the economy, which we all need to support to perform its role, and in doing that, we need to rise above certain sentiments in the interest of our country Nigeria.”
Awoyemi further believed that since SEC had not been outlawed, its roles of regulating the market must not be compromised. On the other hand, he enjoined the commission to raise money from its operations to handle certain projects, while the Ministry of Finance should step in to release some money to cover training and salaries of its staff, pending the final resolution of the face-off.
“This is critical, considering that the stock market is gradually recovering and we do not need this kind of distraction at the moment. With respect to the impact on the market, I do not see any at the moment, because I believe it will be resolved somehow,” he maintained.