Lamido Abubakar Yuguda, on Monday assumed office as Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), almost one month after he was cleared by the Senate on June 6, 2020.
Yuguda resumed alongside the Executive Commissioners namely: Reginald Karawusa, Ibrahim Boyi and Dayo Obisan in Abuja.
Speaking at a ceremony, Yuguda said the capital market, being a crucial component of any economy, has a lot of potentials for growth and development of Nigeria post COVID-19 and beyond.
The SEC, he added, has over the last two decades worked with relevant stakeholders to introduce and implement various initiatives targeted at improving the regulation and development of the market.
The capital market master plan launched in 2014, he continued, has as objective, positioning the capital market for an accelerated development of the national economy.
According to him, “many of the plan’s initiatives have been successfully implemented while many others are Work in Progress in line with its objectives.
“Therefore, the continued implementation of the plan will be one of the major focus of the incoming management, while we also seek possible ways of strengthening it for enhanced impact. We would equally work towards improved market regulation, surveillance and general development.
To do this effectively, he continued, we will need to develop relevant capacities and foster collaboration in achieving our mandates.
Yuguda assured that the new management will work to the best of its abilities to uphold things on ground and consciously seek ways to improve them to the benefit of all stakeholders.
“Together we must set our sights on achieving those milestones that are capable of making the capital market a powerful engine of growth for the Nigerian economy, with God’s help and our collective resolve and dedication, we shall succeed” he added.
He further stated that investor protection would be at the centre of the initiatives of the new management warning that any operator that short-changes investors would not go Scott free.
“We want to assure investors that this market is for them and we are ready to do everything to ensure that we increase investor enlightenment through education, robust regulation and fair dealing”
“For those that want to defraud investors, there would be no respite because we are ready to fight market manipulation to the last, anyone that flouts our rules will be made to face the consequences of their actions,” he stated.
Speaking shortly before the handover, the outgoing Acting Director General, Ms Mary Uduk, said the Commission has in the past few years undertaken key reforms and achieved some regulatory millstones and expressed the hope that the new management will build on achievements recorded so far.
“In implementing the Commission’s mandate of regulating and developing the Nigerian capital market, most of our recent activities are guided by the Capital Market Master Plan (2015-2025).
“This is a 10-year plan with over 100 initiatives to position the capital market for an accelerated development of the national economy. It has an implementation governance structure (CAMMIC) to drive advocacy and ensure national buy-in. Through this, series of engagement have been made with many of the Plan’s initiatives achieved.”
Yuguda obtained a B.Sc. (Honours) degree in Accounting in 1983 from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria and M.Sc in Money, Banking and Finance in 1991 from the University of Birmingham, United Kingdom.
A Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), he holds the CFA charter and a Certificate in Financial Asset Management and Engineering from the Swiss Finance Institute, Geneva, Switzerland.
The SEC boss also holds a Certificate in Investment Performance Management from the CFA Institute, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA, and has attended leadership training programmes at leading business schools including Harvard, INSEAD, IMD, Saïd, Wharton, Haas, Kellogg, Chicago Booth and London.
He brings to the commission over three decades of experience as a central banker, economist, and investment manager, having began his career with Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in 1984, where he worked in several departments. These include Foreign Operations, Banking Supervision and Reserve Management.
Yuguda also served in the Debt Conversion Committee Secretariat where he managed the Nigerian Debt Conversion Programme together with the pioneer staff in the secretariat.
In 1997, he joined the staff of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington DC, USA, on secondment as an economist in the Africa Department. In this position, Yuguda assessed economic policies, offered policy advice and managed balance of payment support programmes in IMF member countries.
In 2001, he returned to the CBN to lead a team of staff to restructure and diversify the CBN’s growing foreign exchange reserve portfolio. A new investment policy was adopted, new asset classes introduced, the CBN’s in-house fixed income trading and settlement capabilities were upgraded, while a reputable global custodian and securities lending agent as well as several international asset managers were selected.
The new SEC boss reached the pinnacle of his career at the CBN as Director of the Reserve Management Department from 2010 to 2016, where he inculcated a strong risk-aware investment culture and engendered a disciplined approach to investment evaluation. He retired voluntarily in 2016.
Yuguda has served as a non-executive director on the boards of Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) and Premium Pension Limited. He has been a member of the Board of Directors of the SEC since June 2019 and is happily married with children.
Photo caption: Incoming Director General, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Lamido Yuguda, receiving the handover note from outgoing Acting Director General of the commission, Ms. Mary Uduk, when he resumed office in Abuja on Monday, July 6, 2020.