BY Goddy Egene
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in order to ensure an effective policing of the capital market.
The pact, which was signed at the EFCC’s office in Abuja last week, serves to, among others, promote the efficient investigation and conclusion of all cases reported by either Institution to each other, to promote the integrity, efficiency and soundness of the Nigerian capital market and the economy in general.
According to a statement from SEC, the MoU also seeks to promote collaboration in the areas of training and secondment of middle cadre officers of the SEC to the EFCC and those of the EFCC to the SEC; or in the alternative, the establishment of a liaison desk in both Institutions as well as promote collaboration in other areas beneficial to both Institutions.
“Going by the provisions of the document, the Institutions shall provide each other with the utmost mutual assistance in any matter falling within the competence of the Institutions, including in particular the following areas: Secondment of middle cadre officers, training to enhance the investigative skills and capacity of personnel of the Institutions and consequently increase the general output and performance of the Institutions and facilitate better understanding of each others’ functions through capacity building programs and human capital development in the areas of investigation of fraud in the capital market,” the statement added.
It added that both institutions will also collaborate in the areas of exchange of information to assist the performance of the Institutions’ respective functions, reporting, investigation and prosecution of fraudulent/manipulative practices in the Nigerian capital market and any other activity as agreed between the Institutions from time to time.
“The MoU serves as a basis of cooperation between the institutions and does not create any binding legal obligation, nor does it modify or supersede any laws, regulations or regulatory requirements in force or applying to the institutions. Furthermore, the MoU does not create any rights enforceable by third institutions nor does it affect any arrangement under other MoUs,” it added.
When the SEC paid a visit to the EFCC recently, its Director General of SEC, Mounir Gwarzo commended the close relationship between both organisations, noting that SEC cannot discharge its responsibility effectively without collaborating with the anti graft agency.
“We are by provision of our law mandated to protect investors on developing the market but the way our law is structured we have limitations over criminal cases and that is why in the last 10 years there has been a very great collaboration between both agencies. We hope that when this MoU becomes fully operational, it will assist in reducing market infractions to the barest minimum,” Gwarzo said.