Reps order probe of finance minister, Gwarzo's controversy


In a unanimous vote, the House directed that status quo be maintained until the outcome of the investigation to be carried out by the House of Representatives Committee on Capital Market & Institutions within two weeks.

The lawmaker said "there were allegations of interference by Ministry of Finance in the discharge of responsibilities by SEC, particularly the Oando Forensic Audit matter, which was largely responsible for the DG's suspension".

SEC also confirmed that though the court advised Oando Plc to approach the Securities Tribunal, it has not received any notification from any court stopping it from proceeding with the forensic audit.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has said that it will go ahead to with its plan to conduct forensic exercise into the activities of Oando Plc.

The action is coming against recent media speculation that the embattled Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mounir Gwarzo was suspended by the Federal Government, partly for refusing to halt the forensic probe on Oando.

"The intervention by the House will put the matter into proper perspective and amicable resolution of the conflict in order to protect the image of the Securities and Exchange Commision in the interest of both local and foreign investors", the motion read.

"I wouldn't know why the minister will not allow SEC to do its job".

He said "what is happening in SEC is symptomatic of the collapse of capital market". If SEC has recommended in its report that the exercise should be conducted, then nothing should stop it whether the DG is suspended or not.

In a statement made available to newsmen yesterday, the Commission said that it had communicated its intention to the management of Oando Plc through a letter dated December 5, 2017 and addressed to the oil firm.

"We wish to restate that our Forensic Auditors had been directed to commence work since November 27, 2017 and as a result shall be at your premises on any date from Wednesday, December 6, 2017".

Although SEC did not disclose full content of the letter, it assured "the general public of its zero tolerance to infractions in the Nigerian capital market".

The ministry has appointed Abdul Zubair as acting chief of the commission while Gwarzo is under investigation. It will also give the Commission the respect it deserves as the headmaster of the market. Deloitte and the other firms were brought in to validate the probe already done by SEC for the past three months, adding that it is only after the audit by external experts that the commission would take a final decision on Oando.