The Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, Monday, suspended, till further notice, all physical meetings and visits to its offices, due to the rising cases of COVID-19 infections across the country, following the second wave of the pandemic.
In a new set of guidelines issued in a circular in Abuja, SEC also advised public companies to take appropriate precautionary measures as recommended by the federal and state governments, as well as the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, in order to ensure the safety of shareholders and participants at their Annual General Meetings/Extra-Ordinary General Meetings and other meetings which may be held during the prevalence of the pandemic.
SEC said the suspension of physical meetings and visits to its offices was in order to protect investors and not disrupt activities in the capital market, adding that henceforth, its operations will now become fully electronic. The Commission, which described the market-focused adjustments as temporary, encouraged capital market operators and other stakeholders to conduct meetings and other engagements virtually.
“The adjustments became necessary to sustain the actualisation of its regulatory mandate and maintain the integrity of the Nigerian capital market during this challenging period.
“We will continue to issue updates to market stakeholders as appropriate and closely coordinate with other financial regulators and governmental authorities.”
The capital market regulator noted that pending new guidelines, all applications should be made electronically to some dedicated email addresses, while it urged all stakeholders in the Nigerian capital market to adhere to all recent directives by the relevant agencies on safety and social distancing.
“For the registration of funds and other relevant filings, a mail can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, while the registration of securities, public offers, mergers and acquisition, debt issuances and others can be done to email@example.com, with fresh applications for registration of capital market operators and pending applications and requests by capital market operators (CMO) for an update of information forwarded to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“For filing of returns by public companies, it can be sent to email@example.com, while CMOs can send to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. “Shareholders with five per cent and more stake can file their returns to firstname.lastname@example.org, while the AML/CFT can send to email@example.com.
Lastly, investors and CMOs who intend to file complaints to the commission can send a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or fill the online complaint form on its website.”