Financial Stakeholders Give Bills Massive Boost



sanusi-lamido newThe Nigerian International Financial Centre Bill and the Office of the Nigerian Financial Ombudsman Bill received overwhelming support from stakeholders across the Nigerian public on Wednesday July 24, 2013, at the public hearing conducted by the Senate Committee on Banking, insurance and Other Financial Institutions and the Committee on Judiciary.
Speaking to officially open the public hearing, the Senate President, David Mark represented by the Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Abdul Ningi, reassured financial stakeholders and the public of the cooperation of the lawmakers in ensuring that the necessary legislative framework was put in place in order to realize economic growth and development.
He urged that it is important in crafting these two bills that stakeholders aimed at striking the delicate balance between the welfare of the people and profit motive of enterprises.
In the lead presentation at the public hearing, the Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mallam, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi represented by the Deputy Governor, Corporate Services, Alhaji Sulieman Barau, reminded members of the joint Committees that the Financial System Strategy 2020, was an attempt to achieve a more coherent reforms across various sectors of the Nigerian financial system.
The essence, according to him, was to set up an integrated international financial centre with all the necessary financial products and institutions aimed at making Nigeria become one of the largest economies by the year 2020. He pointed out that the location of the international centre would be through a competitive process, noting that the presence of a well-developed network of financial institutions would serve as a major determinant factor.
Commenting on the Bill seeking for the establishment of the Office of the Nigerian Financial Ombudsman, Alhaji Barau noted that the essence was about an alternative dispute resolution mechanism and arbitration that would ensure the absence of the present delay being encountered with the conventional judicial system.
Stakeholders from various sectors of the economy commended the efforts being made to put together the required legislative architecture, and presented necessary submissions for some amendments or additional clauses aimed at strengthening the bill.
Earlier in a welcome address at the occasion, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, insurance and Other Financial Institutions, Distinguished Senator Bassey Otu reminded invited guests and stakeholders present that the two bills were being enacted to ensure that Nigeria establishes an international Financial Free Zone with all the necessary financial products and institutions in the drive to make Nigeria become one of the largest economies by the year 2020. He reiterated that the establishment of the Office of the Financial Ombudsman would help bring about a cost effective means of achieving a more efficient dispute resolution mechanism.
The public hearing witnessed huge presence of representatives from other financial regulators such as the Securities and Exchange Commission, Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation, Pension Commission, National Insurance Commission and operators from various financial institutions and other public sector institutions.

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