Stockbrokers Mourn as Frontline Capital Market Operator, Okumagba, Dies

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Goddy Egene

A frontline economist, stockbroker, capital market operator and investment expert, Mr. Albert Okumagba, is dead. He was 56.
Reliable sources in the capital market, where Okumagba was highly respected, confirmed the news of his death. He was said to have died in Abuja.

Although the cause of his death could not be ascertained as at press time, some market operators said his problems began as soon SEC withdrew the registration of BGL Plc in 2015 and Okumagba suspended from all market operations.

The Delta State-born financial expert was the Group Managing Director of BGL Group, a leading investment banking and financial services group. However, Okumagba was suspended from operating in the capital by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on May 20, 2015 when the commission found BGL guilty of complaints made by various investors.

SEC said Okumagba should cease to be a registered Sponsored Individual with the commission following the withdrawal of the registration of BGL Plc as a capital market operator.
According to the commission, the decision to suspend BGL was taken after its Executive Management Committee meeting held on May 19, 2015, where it considered the report of an investigation into the various complaints received from investors against subsidiaries of BGL Group.

SEC directed that “BGL Asset Management Limited, BGL Capital Limited and BGL Securities Limited be suspended from all capital market activities, all Sponsored Individuals of BGL Asset Management Limited, BGL Capital Limited and BGL Securities Limited whose particulars are contained in the commission’s record as at December 2014 be suspended from performing any capital market activity.”

The commission noted that “all suspicious transactions observed in the course of the investigation have been referred to the appropriate law enforcement agencies for further investigation; and BGL Asset Management Limited, BGL Capital Limited and BGL Securities Limited and all individuals involved in the management of the said companies have been referred to the SEC Administrative Proceedings Committee (APC), which will give all parties to the cases a fair hearing.”

In 2017, SEC slammed a life ban on Okumagba, saying the ban was the final decisions of its APC in the matter of APC/1/2015: Rivers State Ministry of Finance & 31 Others V. BGL Plc & 31 Others.
Okumagba was President of Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS) between 2014 and 2015. The CIS is a not-for-profit professional institute providing training for professionals in stockbroking, securities and investment, fund and portfolio management, asset management, investment management, and other related fields.
Born April 1964, Okumagba attended Federal Government College Warri, 1975-81; Kings College Lagos, 1983; the University of Ibadan, University of Lagos. He had Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Economics.

Stockbrokers Mourn

Meanwhile, the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS), the professional umbrella body for securities dealers in Nigeria, has described the death of Okumagba as a great loss to the nation’s capital market.

In a statement, signed by the Registrar and Chief Executive of CIS, Mr. Adedeji Ajadi, the President of the institute, Mr. Olatunde Amolegbe, described Okumagba as a professional imbued with laudable initiatives from which the institute benefited immensely.

“Okumagba was a dedicated stockbroker who demonstrated uncommon commitment to the Institute and the profession as a whole. An astute thinker and big dreamer, he initiated several laudable initiatives which benefitted the Institute immensely. His death is a great loss to the Institute and the Nigerian capital market. He will be sorely missed by all of us who knew him and worked with him. May God grant him eternal rest, and grant his family, friends and colleagues fortitude to bear this great loss,” the institute said.