The House of Representatives ad-hoc committee probing the near collapse of the country’s capital market yesterday explained that it was yet to submit its report to the House as expected because of deliberate withholding of vital documents by the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Central Bank of Nigeria, (CBN) and the Assets Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON).
The panel, which was delegated to the leadership of Rep Ibrahim Tukur El-Sudi after bribery allegations were levelled against the substantive chairman of the Committee on Capital Market and Institutions, Hon. Herman Hembe by the Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Arunma Oteh, was expected to present its report yesterday in line with the time-frame given it by the House.
But El-Sudi, who started off denying reports that he said the report would be ready on Thursday (yesterday), said at a media briefing that the three key stakeholders “had blatantly refused to release some documents requested by the committee.”
He explained that with all other aspects of the investigations completed, the delay in the presentation was due to the refusal of the CBN to furnish it with the forensic audit of the nationalied banks (former Bank PHB now Keystone, Afribank, now Mainstreet Bank and Spring Bank, now Enterprise Bank).
According to El-Sudi, CBN has been employing diversionary tactics by hiding under certain exceptions in sections 88 and 89 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), as they relate to the powers of the parliament when carrying out its functions, adding that CBN cannot interpret the Constitution to suit its purpose,or especially as withholding of documents is only allowed when related to security matters.