Lawmakers have called on the Federal Government to remove permanently from office, Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Ms. Arunma Oteh, who it controversially reinstated on Wednesday.
The House of Representatives came to the decision after deliberating over the report of the House ad hoc committee which probed the Capital Market crash.
The report faults the SEC boss’ appointment based on her qualifications and said she lacked the competence to manage human and material resources of the commission.
The report also accuses Oteh of lying on oath to the panel as regards ownership of nationalized banks and “regulatory failure in some of the recent mergers, acquisitions and approvals of transactions by SEC.”
It goes on to say: “She has shown incompetence in the management of human and material resources at her disposal in SEC, lack of transparency in the management of Project 50…and general inability to carry along her staff, board and management in decision-making in SEC and questionable staff recruitment.”
Calls for Oteh’s dismissal comes barely 24 hours after the Federal Government lifted the suspension imposed on the SEC boss on June 12 by members of the board of the commission.
The board cited her mismanagement of the commission’s Project 50 as its major grievance against Oteh.
Her reinstatement on Wednesday sparked a furor amongst lawmakers, stakeholders, civil society groups and SEC staff members, most of whom protested openly at the SEC gates.
Lawmakers are not only calling for Oteh’s career on a platter, but are also demanding that she be prosecuted.
Some lawmakers on Wednesday had accused the Federal Government and President Goodluck Jonathan in particular of “shielding corruption” by reinstating Oteh before the deliberation of the House on Thursday and had vowed to take action against Oteh regardless.
Jonathan’s spokesman, Reuben Abati, had dismissed allegations that the President was shielding corruption and said the letter written, reinstating Oteh, had also admonished her to be careful not to allow any more “lapses”.
“Due process has therefore been followed; fair hearing has been allowed. And on the basis of the recommendation and findings of independent auditors, government has taken this decision. The allegation of shielding corruption cannot stand in this matter.”
Abati said the government’s decision had nothing to do with the House’s report, calling them “two separate things”.
“When the House was carrying out its probe, there was no communication with the Executive.
“If the House concluded its work on the probe and forwarded its recommendation to the Executive, it would be treated on its merit.”
Besides Oteh, the House is also calling on the Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. Mohammed Adoke, to prosecute the Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Kingsley Moughalu and Managing Director of the the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, Mr. Umar Ibrahim.
The officials have been accused of breaching Section 10 of the Legislative Houses Powers and Privileges Act, “giving false evidence under oath to the committee.”