Hard times await ponzi scheme promoters -SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has said it will continue to work to protect investors and also ensure the promoters of Ponzi schemes are made to face the full wrath of the law

Ponzi scheme is prohibited by the provisions of Section 38(1) of the Investments and Securities Act (ISA) 2007, it does not allow people that are not registered by the SEC to collect money from the public.

Acting Director General of the SEC, Ms Mary Uduk who stated this in an interview in Abuja weekend, said the Commission is stepping up its regulatory oversight to ensure that such illegal entities are sealed off quickly .

According to her, “Ponzi Schemes are illegal and that is why we keep warning the public about the dangers of these outfits. Even on our website we have videos enlightening the public on the dangers of Ponzi schemes

“Once we have information of anyone engaging in illegal fund management business, our enforcement department working with our police unit, shuts them down and the promoters are handed over to the relevant law enforcement agencies for further actions”

According to Uduk, the capital market has been properly positioned to attract Nigerians and other investors and provide benefits to those who invest therein.

She stated that SEC has sustained its investor education programme to assist people understand whatever issues they have around the capital market.

“But besides that, there are new products coming up every day in the Nigerian capital market. We have a lot of ethical funds, one of the safest areas to invest in is in Mutual Funds, Collective Investments Schemes and we encourage Nigerians to be part of these and others”.

Uduk said further that the SEC is presently undertaking various initiatives to make the capital market more user-friendly such that people can participate in it with greater ease, comfort and convenience.

She added: “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 investors do not fall victims to the antics of fraudsters who purport to be able to double any amount of money you make available to them as investment value.

She said that is why the SEC and the entire capital market community have intensified efforts at investment education.

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