SEC moves to curb illicit funds in banking recapitalisation



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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has emphasized its determination to prevent the influx of illicit funds into the capital market amidst the ongoing banking recapitalization exercise.

Speaking at a symposium organized by the Association of Capital Market Academics of Nigeria, themed ‘Banking Sector Recapitalization Implications for the Nigerian Capital Market’, SEC’s Executive Director (Operations), Dayo Obisan, outlined the commission’s proactive stance.

Obisan highlighted the SEC’s positive outlook on the banking sector recapitalization, emphasizing collaboration with stakeholders to ensure a seamless process. He underlined the importance of maintaining a clean and transparent financial system to prevent the entry of laundered funds into the market.

He stated, “At the SEC, we are focused on ensuring a successful and flawless recapitalization exercise that promotes a favorable and positive environment. We are keen on avoiding issues associated with illicit funds and money laundering.”

Obisan emphasized that while fund verification is not ordinarily within SEC’s purview, the commission is ready to collaborate with other regulatory bodies to safeguard the capital market against illicit financial activities.

He noted, “We recognize the importance of fund verification and are prepared to work with institutions like the CBN, NFIU, and CAC to ensure that only legitimate funds enter the capital market. Collaborative engagements are underway to streamline processes and enhance market integrity.”

In his address, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Capital Market, Osita Izunaso, expressed concerns about illicit funds and assured stakeholders of the Senate’s commitment to addressing sectoral challenges.

President of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers, Oluwole Adeosun, emphasized the market’s readiness to support the capitalization exercise, urging banks to explore diverse funding options beyond rights issues to attract new investors.

The recent banking recapitalization exercise, announced by the CBN in late March, mandates increased minimum capital requirements for banks with international, national, and regional licenses, aiming to strengthen the sector and attract foreign investment.

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