Reps seek reversal of SEC DG’s suspension pending outcome of probe

Reps seek reversal of SEC DG’s suspension pending outcome of probe

The House of Representatives has resolved to probe the suspension of the Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC Mr. Mounir Gw

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The House of Representatives has resolved to probe the suspension of the Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC Mr. Mounir Gwarzo, by the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, over alleged financial abuses. While this is on, lawmakers want both parties to maintain the status quo pending the outcome of the probe.

Just two days ago, the Federal Government announced the appointment of Dr Abdul Zubair as acting Director-General, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with immediate effect. The appointment followed the suspension of Mr Munir Gwarzo, the commission’s boss to allow for an unhindered investigation of several allegations of financial impropriety levelled against him.

Among others, Gwazo was alleged to have requested and received the sum of N104 million as severance package when he became DG in 2015. The money was reportedly for his previous position as executive commissioner, despite opposition from the former acting head of the commission’s legal department, Mr. Chukwuogor Frana. A petition, which has been sent to the House of Representatives over the alleged fraudulent activities, also accused him of violating the rules guiding the SEC by awarding contracts to his companies and those of his family and friends.

He was alleged to have awarded contracts to a company, Medusa Investment Company, in which he is a director, and other companies to which he is related, thus resulting in a conflict of interest. Also suspended are two management staff of the commission; Mr. Abdulsalam Naif Habu, Head of Media Division and Mrs. Anastasia Omozele Braimoh, Head of Legal Department who are alleged to have been engaged in financial impropriety in the commission.

Other than the administrative enquiry ordered by Adeosun, Gwarzo is also being investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The commission wants to unravel the owners of the nine companies that were awarded contracts by the SEC under Gwarzo. They include Outbound Investment Limited, Medusa Investments Limited, Northwind Environmental Services, Micro-Technologies Limited, Tida International Limited, Outlook Communications, Acromac Nigeria Limited, Balfort International Investment Limited and Interactiven Worldwide Nigeria Limited.

According to the EFCC, Gwarzo, his wife and other cronies allegedly used these companies to carry out illegal transactions in SEC.