Oteh’s Five-Year Tenure Ends

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Arunma Oteh

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THE federal government has asked Mounir Gwarzo, a commissioner in the securities and exchange commission to take over from Arunma Oteh as the acting director-general of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC. Oteh’s five-year tenure ended on January 7. A statement from SEC which announced Oteh’s exit on Sunday, January 11, said she would be remembered for her passion, purpose, articulation and implementation of reform measures driven by the vision to transform the Nigerian capital market into world class.

“She was in a hurry to see Nigeria achieve a world class capital market that will drive development and make Nigeria one of the most attractive investment destination,”  the statement said, adding that some of her accomplishments include restoring investor confidence through strong enforcement actions and improvement of rules and regulations and investor education.

It said that SEC established the National Investor Protection Fund and strengthened its Administrative Proceedings Committee to deepen and broaden the market and that “The market witnessed significant product innovation, improved listing rules, landmark bond market reforms widening of participation in the markets through licensing and coming on stream of other capital trade points.

“Under her leadership, the SEC also championed reforms at the Nigeria Stock Exchange that witnessed a more robust output and delivery in its operator/oversight role,” SEC said, adding that the initiative to revamp the NSE listing rules led to landmark transactions in dual listing of SEPLAT Petroleum on the NSE and the London Stock Exchange in April 2014, as well as the development of an alternative securities market.

Oteh would certainly be remembered for rescuing the capital market from the doldrums in which it was mired as a result of sharp practices that were rife and the global financial crisis soon after she assumed office in January 2010. Oteh was appointed by the late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua in 2009 but resumed in January 2010.

Prior to the announcement, some staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, were apprehensive over the likely renewal of Arunma Oteh’s tenure as the director-general of the regulatory body.

Members of the staff union, who has waged an unsuccessful battle to remove her in the past, are now agitating that her tenure should not be renewed.

Since she assumed office in 2010 and carried out reforms in a sector partly damaged by the global economic crisis of 2008/2009, and ineptitude, Oteh and Amalgamated Union of Public Corporations, Civil Service Technical and Recreational Services Employee disagreed over her management style.

But Obi Adindu, media adviser to the director general, told a national newspaper, “They (Union officials) are in no position to determine who the director general of SEC should be. That is the prerogative decision of president and commander-in-chief. The fantastic work the DG has done in the last five years is obvious for everyone to see.”

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MTN, Etisalat Up their Investment in 2015

Funmi Onajide
Onajide

MTN Nigeria and Etisalat Nigeria are to invest billions of dollar to improve the quality of services they render to subscribers. MTN will spend about $1.2 billion (N216 billion) to upgrade its network this year. Etisalat will also continue its rollout across Nigeria with about $1.2 million medium term facility it secured from a consortium of banks in 2013.

Subscribers have persistently complained of poor services from the GSM companies and the regulatory body Nigerian Communications Commission had punished the telecom firms for not live up to expectation.

MTN had invested about $15 billion (N2.8 trillion) in the last 13 years on network infrastructure in the country, prompting Funmi Onajide to state that no operator has spent more.

— Jan. 19, 2015 @ 01:00 GMT

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