The Securities and Exchange Commission has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit to combat Ponzi schemes and fraud in the capital market.
The Acting Director-General of SEC Mary Uduk, stated this in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja.
She said the collaboration was necessitated by the need for SEC and NFIU to close ranks in the face of “insider dealings, reawakening of Ponzi schemes, cybercrime and other fraudulent activities that have engulfed the market in the last few years”.
she said the commission was paying close attention to digital transactions and was in the process of amending its laws to capture such activities.
She stated that under the collaboration, NFIU would assist the commission in tracking suspicious transactions as they occur.
“If we have solutions that will help us track transactions, it will greatly reduce the incidence of insider dealings.
“We will be very willing to collaborate with you on that in our determination to ensure that our markets are efficient and transparent and all investors are protected’’, she said.
she said, the MOU covers training, secondment of middle cadre officers between the organizations, cross-border monitoring, repatriation of stolen funds from the capital market and prosecution of offenders, among others.
Uduk stressed the need for more public sensitization to ensure that unsuspecting Nigerians do not continue to lose their hard-earned money through Ponzi schemes.
For his part the Director of NFIU Modibbo Tukur, assured SEC that the Agency would continue to play its part in ensuring that the financial system was safe for Nigerians to operate.
He disclosed that NFIU was making efforts to ensure that the financial system was rid of shell companies, adding that, for companies to exist, they should have physical addresses.
“If anyone establishes a company, it has to be a company indeed and we have to be firm on this.
“This has become more important now given the rollout of the Economic Community of West Africa States single currency, because with that, we know that capital and investments will move across borders and it is a single currency.
“So, we have to step up regulation to avoid fraudulent transactions. We will begin by September and some companies will have to be deregistered if they do not meet the criteria.
“We will publish the parameters and also give them enough time to regularize after which those that do not comply before the deadline will be shut down,”.