Capital market infractions: SEC bars Oando Group’s CEO for 5 years

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has concluded investigation of Oando Plc and directed among others the resignation of the affected Board members.

It also barred the Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) and the Deputy Group Chief Executive Officer (DGCEO) from being directors of public companies for a period of five years. 

SEC also directed the convening of an Extra-Ordinary General Meeting on or before July 1, 2019, to appoint new directors. 

These, among others, the commission stated, are part of measures to address identified violations in the company. 

“Following the receipt of two petitions by the Commission in 2017, investigations were conducted into the activities of Oando Plc (a company listed on the Nigerian and Johannesburg Stock Exchanges). 

“Certain infractions of Securities and other relevant laws were observed. The Commission further engaged Deloitte & Touche to conduct a Forensic Audit of the activities of Oando Plc.    

“The general public is hereby notified of the conclusion of the investigations of Oando Plc. The findings from the report revealed serious infractions such as false disclosures, market abuses, misstatements in financial statements, internal control failures, and corporate governance lapses stemming from poor board oversight, irregular approval of directors’ remuneration, unjustified disbursements to directors and management of the company, related party transactions not conducted at arm’s length, amongst others,” the statement read in part.

The SEC also directed the payment of monetary penalties by the company and affected individuals and directors, and refund of improperly disbursed remuneration by the affected Board members to the company.

“The Commission is confident that with the implementation of the above directives and introduction of some remedial measures, such unwholesome practices by public companies would be significantly reduced.

“Therefore, in line with the federal government’s resolve to build strong institutions, boards of public companies are enjoined to properly perform their fiduciary duties as required under extant securities laws.”

The commission, as the apex regulator of the Nigerian capital market, maintains its zero tolerance to market infractions, and reiterates its commitment to ensuring the fairness, integrity, efficiency and transparency of the securities market, thereby strengthening investor protection.

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