SEC orders capital market operators to probe foreign, domestic clients

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Capital Market Operators (CMOs) in Nigeria have been directed not to conduct any form of business with individuals or group linked to terrorist groups.

The CMOs were warned by Nigeria’s Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) after the Federal Government made available a gazette last week, which declared that bandits had been designated as terrorists.

Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, had signed a document proscribing activities of Yan Bindiga Group, Yan Ta’Adda Group and other similar groups as terrorists.

Capital market operators were told that any suspicious transactions recorded must be reported to the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) for investigation.

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In respect to the alert, the stock market regulator wrote in its blog circular that before any transaction is executed, all existing clients of CMOs shall be screened.

Prior to on-boarding of new client and during a one-off transaction(s), operators were directed by SEC to screen and verify every client against domestic and foreign terrorist groups.

The regulator wrote, “All Capital Market Operators (CMOs) are required by this circular to screen and verify every client against the above proscribed groups and any other proscribed terrorist group(s), United Nation Security Council Resolutions (UNSCRs) list, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) list, etc. prior to the on-boarding of a new client and when carrying out one-off transaction(s).

“All existing clients of CMOs shall be screened prior to executing any transaction from the date of this circular.” SEC stated, adding, “In line with the findings of screening, CMOs shall file suspicious transaction reports (STRs) immediately to the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).

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