SEC probe: Panel recommends Gwarzo’s dismissal | Nigerian News. Latest Nigeria News. Your online Nigerian Newspaper. f

The Administrative Panel of Inquiry into allegations of violation of Public Service Rules by suspended Director-General (D-G) of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Mr. Mounir Gwarzo, has recommended his dismissal from public service.

He is to be “dismissed from public service of the federal government for holding the position of a Director in private companies (Medusa Investment Limited and Outbound Investments Limited) while serving as the Director-General of SEC in breach of Public Service Rule (PSR) 030424, PSR, 030402 and Section 6 of the Investments and Securities Act, 2007,” it was recommended according to a presidency sources.

In addition, the panel headed by the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Finance, Alh. Mahmoud Isa-Dutse, recommended that Mr. Gwarzo should refund the N104, 851, 154.94 which he illegally collected as severance package from SEC.

Sources said that it was recommended that Mr. Gwarzo be referred to the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) for further investigation of the allegation of using his position as Director-General to influence the award of contracts to Outbound Investments Limited in view of provisions of Sections 57 (12) (b) and 58 (5) of the Public Procurement Act, 2007.

On the other senior staff:  Mrs. Anastasia Braimoh and Mr. Abdulsalam Naif, who ran into trouble along with Mr. Gwarzo, the panel recommended that they be referred to SEC for appropriate disciplinary actions, in line with the provisions of the Staff Manual of SEC.

Within a week of his appointment as D-G of SEC in May, 2015 Mr. Gwarzo requested that he be paid the sum of N104.8 million as severance package in respect of the end of his appointment as Executive Commissioner, a position he occupied for two years and four months.

The request, made via a memo dated May 26, 2015, was referred to Mrs. Chukwuogor Franca, then acting Head of Legal Department.

It was learnt that Mrs. Chukwuogor advised against honouring the request made by the then DG, as according to her, the D-G was still working in SEC.  In spite of the legal advice, Mr. Gwarzo had his way.

On his breach of PSR by holding his position as director in two private companies while working in SEC, the panel, as learnt obtained Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) documents which indicated that Mr. Gwarzo was still listed as a shareholder as at November 7, 2017.

It was learnt that the former D-G told the panel that he resigned his directorship of the said companies in 2012, contrary to CAC documents.

It was equally established that he was still a signatory to the bank account of Medusa Investment Limited with one of the new generation banks, as at the time the panel was sitting.

“When the panel confronted Mr. Gwarzo with copies of letters dates 24 July, 2015 (Request for Change of Account Officer) and that of 16th August 2016 (Request for Naira Credit Card for Directors of Medusa Investments Limited) he admitted to have authored and signed the said letters , but claimed that it was a regrettable action,” it was learnt.

The ruling is  coming after the feud between Oando Plc and one of the shareholders of the company, Alhaji Dahiru Mangal over shareholding structure has come to an end following the intervention of Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, on the matter recently.

Meanwhile, at the public hearing on the conflict between Minister of Finance and the suspended Director General of SEC, organised by House of Representative Committee in Capital Markets and other Institutions, Adeosun told the Committee chaired by Rep Tajudeen Yusuf, PDP, Kogi that “Munir remains suspended and I’m sending my recommendations to Mr. President today (Tuesday).”

Gwarzo through his Counsel, GUK  Igwe, SAN, in his submission had also noted that the Minister does not have such a right to suspend the DG.

The Finance Minister explained that the Ministry approved the Commission’s recommendations on the technical suspension of the shares of Oando Plc, which was forwarded barely a week after the suspension was imposed on the oil firm.

While responding to Gwarzo’s allegations bothering on having shares in Oando Plc as levelled against her, Adeosun,  dismissed the report, saying that she has no shares nor  does any member of her family has single share in the oil company.

On his part, Christopher Gabriel, Head of Legal Services in Federal Ministry of Finance contended that Gwarzo’s interests contravened the Code of Conduct for Public Officers set out in the 5th Schedule of the Constitution, Section 311 of the Penal Code Act and Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act.

He said contrary to the position of Gwarzo that the “Minister cannot suspend him, technically she can suspend SEC DG.

Speaking earlier, Munir Gwarzo, the suspended SEC Director General alleged that the Minister, who had earlier queried him over the proposed forensic audit of Oando Plc, eventually approved it.

Reacting to allegations bothering on  corrupt practices and other related offences , Gwarzo admitted being a director and shareholder in Outbound Investment Limited, Northwind Environmental Services and Micro-Technologies Nigeria Limited.

It was alleged that Gwarzo diverted to personal use vehicles belonging to SEC despite collecting N84.3 million as monetized allowances for four cars, an action that is in breach of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers, Section 311 of the Penal Code Act and Section 19 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act.

Meanwhile, in  his opening remarks, Yusuf Tajudeen, chairman, House Committee on Capital Market and other Institutions noted that the lingering risks if left unchecked may impact negatively on the capital market, hence the prompt intervention of the House to promote mutual harmony and investment drive into the economy. He assured all parties that the Committee will be fair, firm and frank when and where necessary.


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