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Oscar Onyeama Enlightens Lawmakers on the New NSE

By on March 15, 2012

The Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Oscar Onyeama, tucked his tail between his legs and appeared before the House Committee on Capital Markets, putting aside his earlier defiance.

In his testimony before the lawmakers, Onyeama spoke on what he termed the new NSE, referring to a new and improved Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).

Here are a few excerpts from the testimony:

“The new NSE provides a vehicle for long-term savings and borrowing, and hence, efficient use of financial resources. The current market cycle presents an incredible opportunity for investors.

“The reforms are still ongoing, and with government support, we remain confident that by the year’s end, the market will be well on its way to recovering its vibrancy.”

“The NSE has emerged stronger and more focused, and we assure our investors that the Council and the management team will continue to carry out market reforms to champion the acceleration of Nigeria’s and Africa’s economic development.”

Speaking on previous challenges at the Exchange. Onyeama said, “Unstructured management and ineffective internal processes were responsible for the NSE’s lenient approach to achieving its directive to oversee the capital market, the companies listed on the Exchange and the NSE’s licensed dealing members; corporate governance was weak as well.

“The Council (our equivalent of a Board of Directors)is entrusted to carry out a specific mandate of providing an efficient market by ensuring appropriate oversight of Exchange management, but priorities may have been skewed during the boom, causing a shift in focus, from the stability and development of the market to other non-priority areas, including campaigning and marketing.”

“The Exchange was not adequately equipped to manage systemic risks, nor was it diligent in enforcing the rules of the market, there was a known lack of will to enforce sanctions for market infractions, and sentiments towards the Exchange began shifting once the market took a turn in 2008,”