Speaker, House of Representatives Yakubu Dogara on Friday said that the parliament would strengthen capital market laws to empower regulators to sanction erring operators.
Dogara said this at a news conference in Lagos after ringing the closing bell at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
He said that capital market regulators needed to be on top of their responsibilities in order to boost investors’ confidence in the market.
Dogara said that capital market regulators should be empowered to sanction operators that arbitrarily abuse the market so as to regain investors’ confidence.
” I guess one of the issues that we must address is the issue of sanction.’’
Dogara said it was important for the investors to have confidence that those who perpetuate infractions in the market were dealt with.
He explained that insider dealings were the major cause of capital market crash, noting that people that abused the market in the past were not adequately sanctioned.
“We need to deepen the market, we need to create and sustain confidence in the market and for confidence to come back we need to do more.
“When we start sanctioning confidence will come back to the market,” Dogara said.
He explained that the house would likely pass laws that would compel multinationals, oil and gas companies, telecommunication firms and privatised companies to list on NSE to deepen the market.
Dogara noted that the “flow of resources from citizens to these companies is what makes them rich”.
He added that this would also engender economic prosperity.
According to him, the house will look at the agreements between some of these companies and the Bureau for Public Enterprises.
He said where it was discovered that they flauted the agreement on listing they would forced to do or risk being penalised.
“There is an ongoing discussion about strengthening those clauses to henceforth ensure that we emphasise that once a company is privatised you must list part of the equity in the market.”
Dogara said that the house would ensure that this was done in respective of spectrum given out telecommunication companies, noting that the spectrum given out to them would soon expire.
“We will ensure that this will be a cardinal requirement that will compel them to list some part of the equity in the market,” he said.
Dogara said that the house would use legislative powers to ensure full implementation of the Capita Market Master Plan.
Mr Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, NSE Council President, described Dogara’s visit as historic.
Aig-Imoukhuede said that the parliament had shown concern about the economy and the capital market.
“It is very gratifying that you are out to create a conducive environment for the market,” Aig-Imoukhuede said.
He assured the speaker that the capital market operators would not relent and would do everything on their part to ensure that the market becomes number one in Africa.