Do not invest in Ponzi schemes, SEC boss warns Nigerians

With many Nigerians still recovering from the collapse of MMM, the Ag. Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Ms. Mary Uduk has urged them to desist from investing their money in investments that offer unreasonable levels of returns at little risk to investors.

She described promoters of Ponzi schemes as ‘false prophets’ of the financial sector.

A statement by SEC in Abuja said Uduk spoke during a Town Hall

meeting on Current Initiatives by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Nigeria to enhance investor value held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Wednesday.

Uduk who enjoined inventors to be wary of any investments that is proposing return levels that are unreasonably high, added that they should always cross check that such fund managers and the products they are offering are registered with the SEC.

She explained that the meeting was aimed at keeping Nigerians abreast of the initiatives that the commission was undertaking in order to make the capital market more user friendly such that people can participate in it with greater ease, comfort and convenience.

According to her, “There is the added and all-important purpose of ensuring that the gains of your participation, be these dividends, proceeds from share sales/transfers, etc. accrue to you seamlessly, without sweat and in the shortest time possible. The purpose is also to ensure that you do not fall victim to the antics of fraudsters who purport to be able to double any amount of money you make available to them as investment value.

“These fraudsters or promoters of Ponzi Schemes are the false prophets of the investment environment, they are the ill wind that blows no good and at whose sight you must flee; they are to be avoided. This is one message you must take home to family, friends, relations and acquaintances in order to save them from the agony of loss of their hard–earned money” she stated.

Uduk also used the occasion to inform investors that SEC is currently leading the entire capital market industry in an effort to migrate all shareholders to an e –Dividend regime.

The essence of the e-Dividend Mandate Management System she said, is to eradicate or reduce to the barest minimum the incidence of unclaimed dividend.

“Unclaimed dividend is an undesirable feature of the Nigerian capital market which denies investors/shareholders the gains of participating in the capital market. It denies the economy access to the huge amount of money which should have accrued to shareholders and would have gone into circulation to oil the wheel of the economy.

“It is a consequence of the bottlenecks which are inherent in the erstwhile paper dividend warrant regime such as postal system inefficiency, change in investors’ addresses, poor fidelity and human fallibility in dividend payment processes, amongst others”.

In his remarks, Head of Port Harcourt Zonal office of SEC, Mr. Obi Adindu said the SEC is interested in making the capital market stronger and better and a means of creating wealth for Nigerians.

“We are here to get your views on our initiatives and policies so that we can fine tune them where necessary in a bid to ensure that your investments are well protected in the capital market”, Adindu added.

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