The Chairman, Nigerian Bar Association’s Section on Business Law (NBA SBL), Dr. Adeoye Adefulu, yesterday said it is collaborating with the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), and the Institute of Directors (IoD) to improve on listed/unlisted companies’ corporate governance in Nigeria.
Adefulu, who was speaking with journalists after the closing gong ceremony in commemoration of the 2023 NBA-SBL Annual Conference in Lagos, said “NBA SBL, NGX and IoD are part of what we call corporate governance triangle. The corporate governance triangle is focused on improving corporate governance of not just listed but also potential companies that are looking towards listing as well.
“We work to improve on the environment and education around corporate governance. We want companies that are small to grow bigger for them to work with the principle of good corporate governance. It is expected to help improve their acceptance into the Exchange. We also work with SEC on regulatory issues.”
The 2023 conference is with a theme: “Nigeria Business Landscape: Priorities for Law, Policy, and Regulation.”
He noted that the 2023 NBA-SBL Annual Conference is setting agenda for the President Bola Tinubu in critical areas of law policies and regulations needed urgently to enhance economic growth and create jobs.
He said areas such as Startups, Artificial Intelligence (AI), agriculture, and Energy Transactions, among other areas, are pivotal to the new administration reforms, stressing on government prioritizing laws and regulations needed to sharpen its policies.
He noted that the NBA-SBL past conferences have been impacting as key issues such as the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA), and Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), among others were discussed and its numerous reforms from the conference have aided the government in decision-making.
He expressed further that “Beyond the conference, our work is to ensure the regulatory works best for investors. We work with different regulatory institutions on a regular basis, helping them sharpen the laws those regulations are based upon,” he said.
He expressed that the 9th Assemble was focused on a lot of reforms but as the world is dynamic, the legal environment, policy, and regulations needed to be dynamic as well, stating that Nigeria with a growing young population needed to be engaged in economic growth.
“The dynamism in the growing population must be reflected in the way our National Assemble, regulators pass law. When they pass the law, it is not enough to pass but implement it and regulate it in such a way there will be an inflow of businesses into the country. We have to keep the young generation engaged and we can only do that by improving the business environment for the Nigerian economy to grow.”
“On what the new government needed to address for Nigeria to witness economic growth, he said, “Investors wanted to know what the rules are and if it not applied in a discriminate manner. They wanted to know if these rules are clear and applied to everybody.
“The focus of regulation is to ensure that the companies thrive in such an environment and they must thrive according to the rules. We think the new government already getting some things right but we are looking forward to those that will take the initiatives further.”
He noted that Nigeria’s problem is not laws and regulations but the implementation.
“Implementation is putting the right people in the right position. It is also a question of leadership,” he said.