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Business News

SEC may not be able to impose N89.7 million fine on Oando anymore

Oando Plc has secured a leave from a Federal High Court seated in Lagos, for an order of certiorari for the purpose of quashing SEC’s N89.7m fine.

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SEC, unclaimed dividends

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) may have lost the authority to carry out the planned imposition of N89.7 million fine on Oando Plc. The commission had announced in a letter released on May 31, 2019 that it would fine the company. However, the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has granted leave to the oil and gas company to file a motion for a judicial review of the decision.

Justice Ayokunle Faji of the Federal High Court had granted leave for an order of certiorari for the purpose of quashing the decision of the capital market regulator.

Oando Plc, Wale Tinubu

CEO, Oando Plc, Wale Tinubu

Nairametrics understands that Mary Uduk, SEC’s Acting Director-General, SEC and Oando’s interim head, Mutiu Sumonu, were the first to third respondents.

[READ MORE: Why shareholders are upset over SEC’s “punishment” of Oando Plc.]

Other orders: The court also granted an order of certiorari for the quashing of SEC’s directive, that mandated Oando to convene an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) on or before July 1, to appoint new directors and articulate remedial measures for the alleged corporate governance lapses.

More so, the Justice granted an order of certiorari for the quashing of a press release by SEC on June 1, appointing an interim management team to be headed by Sunmonu to oversee Oando’s affairs.

Prior to this, SEC had on May 31, 2019, announced the conclusion of an investigation of Oando Plc and ordered its Group Chief Executive Officer, Wale Tinubu, his deputy Omamofe Boyo, amongst other affected board members, to resign.

Consequently, SEC barred Tinubu and Boyo from being directors of quoted companies for a period of five years.

[READ ALSO: Judge adjourns case between Oando and SEC, sets new date.

But in an ex-parte application filed through their counsel, Olasupo Shasore (SAN), Tinubu and Boyo prayed for an order of certiorari to quash SEC’s purported imposition of a fine on Tinubu.

Oando, also through Shasore, filed an application seeking for judicial review of the SEC decisions against it with a view to quashing them. This was granted by Justice Faji.

The Genesis: Oando Plc and SEC have been at loggerheads since the regulatory body released the results of its investigation into the activities of the management of the company. SEC accused the management of market abuses and false disclosures, demanding the resignation of Tinubu, the Chairman of the Board, and other executives and directors of the company.

Famuyiwa Damilare is a trained journalist. He holds a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Mass Communication at the prestigious Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ).Damilare is an innovative and transformational leader with broad-based expertise in journalism and media practice at large. He has explored his proven ability in the areas of reporting, curating and generating contents, creatively establishing social media engagements, and mobile editing of videos. It is safe to say he’s a multimedia journalist.

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Real Estate

FG to unveil dedicated portal for sale of houses to Nigerians

The Federal Government has announced plans to launch a dedicated web portal for the sale of buildings to Nigerians in the next few weeks.

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Nigeria needs N1.5 trillion within the next 3 years to fix roads - Fashola

The Federal Government has announced plans to launch a dedicated web portal for the sale of buildings to Nigerians in the next few weeks.

The platform is expected to help contributors to the National Housing Fund (NHF) access mortgage loans on a first-come, first-serve basis.

This disclosure was made by the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola while speaking at the ninth meeting of the National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development in Jos, Plateau State.

Fashola, who was represented by the Minister of State for Works and Housing, Abubakar Aliyu, pointed out that the ministry is currently at the completion stages of the first phase of the national housing programme in 34 states of the federation, which provided land for it.

He said, “We urge the state governments to alert their residents to this opportunity for interested persons to apply.”

Fashola commended the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) for being at the forefront of the cooperative housing initiative at the federal level, adding that it has the advantage of allowing cooperative members to choose what they design and build to fit their budgets.

They can leverage their members to get group discount for the purchase of building materials as well as the engagement of contractors.

Fashola disclosed that FMBN as the driver of the housing initiative has engaged 86 co-operatives in projects; approved N35, 784 billion cumulatively; disbursed N10.95 billion; and processed as at January, 57 co-operative housing development loans.

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Fashola emphasized that what the Federal Government can do directly in housing is limited compared to what states can do, just as state governments are also limited, compared to what the private sector and individuals can do.

He said, “The majority of houses available for sale or rent belong to individuals and private companies compared to what states or Federal Government has available. Therefore, many of the tenants who owe rent, who face eviction or who seek to rent or buy property are dealing with private citizens or companies and less so with government agencies.’

My recommendation for improving access and affordability to housing in the Covid-19 era is for private companies and individuals to give back some of what they control to citizens in the way the Federal Government has given back to citizens some of what it controls.’’

He explained, “for example in cases where the rent of businesses or individuals are due for renewal, the private landlords can give back, by accepting monthly, quarterly or half-yearly rent instead of one year, two or three years rent in advance.”

Bottom line

Nigeria has been bedevilled by a housing crisis that has left Africa’s most populous nation ill-equipped to properly provide accommodation for its citizens and inhabitants.

Some of the housing problems in the country include unresolved rent tenure arrangements, high cost of building materials, access to infrastructure, deficiency of housing finance arrangements, stringent loan conditions from mortgage banks, time to process legal documents and inadequate government housing policies.

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Coronavirus

Covid-19: Nigeria committed to procuring 29 million J&J vaccines

The Nigerian Government is still committed to acquiring 29.59 million doses of Johnson & Johnson covid-19 vaccines through the Afrixem Bank AVAT initiative. 

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AstraZeneca suspends COVID-19 vaccine final stage trial over safety concerns, COVID-19: J&J starts vaccine trials on humans after success on monkeys

The Nigerian Government says it is still committed to acquiring 29.59 million doses of Johnson & Johnson covid-19 vaccines through the Afrixem Bank AVAT initiative.

This was disclosed Mrs Zainab Ahmed, Minister of Finance at the recent ‘Collaborative Africa Budget Reform Initiative (CABRI) General Assembly webinar.

What the Minister said

“Therefore, the supplementary budget for COVID-19 vaccines will cover the cost of additional vaccines over and above those provided by COVAX, as well as the full cost of operations and logistics for delivering the vaccines around the country.

Already, the sum of N29.1 billion has been released from the Routine Immunization budgetary provision (Service Wide Vote) to the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) as an advance for the operational cost of deployment of the COVID-19 vaccines. The N29.1 billion represents about 52 percent of the amount required over 2021-22,” she said.

She added that FG plans to vaccinate 70 percent of eligible (18 years and above) Nigerians over the 2021 and 2022 fiscal years, with the COVAX agreement willing to cover 43.1 million of the eligible population.

In case you missed it

The World Health Organization (WHO)  announced the approval of China’s Sinopharm vaccine for Covid-19 vaccination. The vaccine is reported to have 79% efficacy against covid.

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