Following its sustained clampdown on operators of illegal investment programmes, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has successfully blocked some bank accounts with over N1 billion.
Disclosing this yesterday in Lagos, the Acting Director General of the commission, Ms. Mary Uduk, put the number of accounts under caution at four.
Uduk, who reviewed the activities of the commission in 2019 and also gave an outlook for the current year, equally put the value of real estate properties under investigation at N1.22 billion.
According to her, the number of capital market fraud cases being prosecuted currently stands at eight, putting the total amount generated from penalties at N194,477,815.
“The number of illegal operator/Ponzi schemes sealed is four while the number of illegal operators’ bank accounts cautioned/blocked by the SEC Police unit stands at four.
“Total amount in the blocked accounts of the Ponzi operators is N1,119,347,381.94. The value of real estate properties cautioned under investigation stands at N1,226,460,000.00.
“Also, the number of capital market fraud cases being prosecuted is eight.”
She said although the past year was challenging and difficult, SEC successfully implemented key programmes and projects, achieving significant milestones.
According to her, “The commission is poised to build on the gains of 2019 with a renewed focus on resource optimisation and execution of prioritised initiatives in the coming year.”
She listed areas where the commission achieved major strides to include operations, Collective Investment Schemes, institutional capacity assessment, market, enforcement and rules.
Speaking on 2020 outlook, she said the commission would take into account initiatives outlined under Regulatory Regime, Information Technology, Financial Technology, Master Plan Execution, and Enforcement.
On regulatory regime, she said the commission would continue to implement Risk Based Supervision to ensure a more efficient monitoring effort, upgrade of identity management on investor accounts to include Bank Verification Numbers and verifications against the Nigerian Interbank Settlement Systems Limited (NIBSS) BVN validation portal, transit to deemed approval regime for debt securities.
“Following the introduction of the checklist regime and upon confirmation of satisfactory compliance, a deemed approval regime will be adopted for issuance of debt securities by which proposed issuance will be deemed approved upon filing of the transaction documents with a duly completed and executed checklist. This is expected to reduce the time within which approval is given to not more than five working days,” she noted.