Post Views: 647 Following Wednesday’s early morning announcement by the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) of a full suspension in the shares of Oando Plc ...
Following Wednesday’s early morning announcement by the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) of a full suspension in the shares of Oando Plc for an initial two days until Friday, October 20, and an indefinite technical suspension thereafter, on the order of the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), the capital market apex regulator, also on Wednesday, said it plans to conduct a forensic audit into the affairs of the company.
A statement signed by the SEC management, said the decision followed a comprehensive review of the two petitions by Alhaji Dahiru Barau Mangal and Ansbury Incorporated which initially sought to stop the company’s annual general meeting (AGM) in Uyo, for which a waiver was given.
The review showed among others, that Oando, which is also listed on the JSE Stock Exchange, Johannesburg, South Africa, breached provisions of Nigeria’s Investments & Securities Act (ISA) 2007 and the SEC Code of Corporate Governance for Public Companies.
To ensure the independence and transparency of the exercise, the commission said “the Forensic Audit shall be conducted by a consortium of experts made up of auditors, lawyers, stockbrokers and Registrars.”
The statement added that it was in its bid to further ensure that the interests of all shareholders of Oando Plc are preserved during the course of the exercise that it “directed the Nigerian Stock Exchange to place the shares of Oando Plc on technical suspension.
“However in view of the fact that it is not technologically feasible for the Exchange to effect a technical suspension except after 48 hours, the Commission directed as follows:
“Effective for forty-eight (48) hours from today, 18 October 2017 to 20 October 2017, The Nigerian Stock Exchange should implement a full suspension in the trading of the shares of Oando Plc; and
“Effective from 20 October 2017 and until further directive, The Exchange should implement a technical suspension in the shares of Oando Plc.”
Specifically, the SEC management, according to the statement, found evidence of suspected insider dealing, “related party transactions not conducted at arm’s length (and) discrepancies in the shareholding structure of Oando Plc,” among others.
In line with its primary role as apex regulator of the Nigerian Capital Market to regulate the market and protect the investing public, the Commission noted “that the above findings are weighty and therefore needs to be further investigated.
“After due consideration, the Commission believes that it is necessary to conduct a forensic audit into the affairs of Oando Plc. This is pursuant to the statutory duties of the Commission as provided in section 13(k), (n), (r) and (aa) of the ISA 2007.”