Acting Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms. Mary Uduk, on Wednesday met with members of the Association of Corporate Trustees in Abuja and restated her management’s determination to ensure adequate protection for investors in the capital market as part of instilling confidence.
Restating the commission task of ensuring that investors are not shortchanged in the course of market transactions, will she believes should encourage greater participation that is necessary for the market to grow and develop.
Represented by the Acting Executive Commissioner, Operations of the SEC, Isyaku Tilde, Ms. Uduk said this is why the SEC is working towards driving down transaction costs so as to ensure investors do not bear unnecessary costs.
In her words, the SEC is “doing a lot to boost investors’ confidence in our market. But I want to say that both local and foreign investors are very good for the market. For instance, the foreign investors, because they trade their shares all of the time it leads to price discovery as against the local investors that just take a long term view on their investments.
“Investors’ fears can be of two folds, firstly they could be afraid because they feel that capital market operators will mismanage their investments, secondly is looking at the volatility of the market that makes investors skeptical.
“For the first scenario, we have a number of initiatives that we have put in place to boost investors’ confidence. We have the E-Dividend mandate system, the Direct Cash Settlement as well as multiple subscriptions in place. For the second category, investors have to take ownership of their investments… they have to monitor their investments, attend Annual General Meetings as well as read the annual reports sent to them,” she stressed.
The Acting DG said investors are equally protected through the National Investors Protection Fund (NIPF) Risk-Based supervision that enables the SEC to adequately supervise the operators while ensuring that they do not engage in functions for which they were not licensed.
According to her, the Complaints Management Framework enables investors to know where to complain to and how long it takes for such complaints to be resolved. For those of the investors that are averse to risk, they should get their financial advisers to advise them properly on where to invest.
“We also advise retail investors to invest in Collective Investment Schemes and Mutual Funds because those are managed independently by professionals and they are diversified thereby reducing risks. We are committed to protecting investors in the work we do. We will keep working on our rules and the possibility of amending them when the need arises, we want more transparency in the market so that investors will feel comfortable and the market can be better.” Uduk added.
President of the association, Mrs. Tokunboh Ajayi, assured the commission of members’ commitment to attracting investors to the market without encumbering them with costs and commended the SEC on its efforts in transaction costs reduction.
“This market is dynamic and that is why as a group we keep on evolving and devising ways to make the market better. We will continue to render our best and ensure our members operate within the confines of the rules and regulations in the market” she stressed.
Photo caption: From left, Managing Director, UTL Trust Management Service, Mrs Olufunke Oluseyi; President, Association of Corporate Trustees, Mrs Tokunbo Ajayi; Acting Director-General, Securities and Exchange Commission, Ms Mary Uduk; and Acting Executive Commissioner, Operations, SEC, Isyaku Tilde during a Meeting between SEC and Association of Corporate Trustees in Abuja, Wednesday.