How Okereke-Onyuike ruined capital market – Oteh–DailyTrust

Written by Turaki A. Hassan

The Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms Arunma Oteh, yesterday gave  graphic details of how the former Director General of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Professor Ndidi Okereke-Onyuike and her management team allegedly misappropriated the commissions’ funds which led to the near collapse of the capital market.

Testifying before the House of Representatives ad-hoc committee investigating the near collapse of the Nigerian Capital Market in Abuja yesterday, Oteh said that the NSE management was found to be weak and inefficient.

“There were incidences of financial misappropriation, false accounting, misrepresentation and questionable transactions such as the purchase of N37 million yacht by NSE and wrote down the book value within one year by recognising it in the books as a gift presented during its 2008 Long Service Award (LSA) yet there are no records of the beneficiary,” Oteh said.

She alleged that SEC bought 165 Rolex wrist watches for N186m as gifts but only 73 were presented to the awardees. The outstanding 92 Rolex watches valued at N99.5 million remain unaccounted for.”

She said that in 2009, N1.7 billion of the 2008 operational surplus was distributed to council members of the NSE and employees in violation of extant laws.

She said transactions included the reclassification of N1.3 billion originally expended on business travels while N953 million of the amount was reclassified under “software upgrade.”

She lamented that these and other infractions by the NSE led to the crash of the capital market from N12.6 trillion at the end of March 2008 to a bottom of N3.99 trillion in February 2009.

Also yesterday, the Director General of the Nigerian Stock Exchange Oscar Onyeama faulted the appointment of eight people by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to represent it on the board of the exchange.

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