The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is poised to play a pivotal role in putting structures in place for firms to raise long term capital through innovative financial instruments that would be to the benefit of the investor.
Mr Paul Ababio, Deputy Director-General, SEC, said the Capital Market wields significant potential as an avenue for wealth creation and sustainable development.
He said the Securities Industry Act 2016 (Act 929) empowers the Commission to ensure that investors were protected from misleading, manipulative or fraudulent practices of listed companies and market operators.
Speaking at the Shareholders Association on the Stock Market, Ghana, meeting in Accra, Mr Ababio explained that this was clearly in line with International Organization of Securities Commissions’ (IOSCO) core objective of securities regulation, which includes the protection of investors; ensuring that markets were fair, efficient and transparent; and the reduction of systemic risk.
“As a Commission, you can be assured that we are working to strengthen our Corporate Governance guidelines to market players and to enhance reporting standards.
“In the months ahead, we will also be increasing our information dissemination, following the constitution and swearing in if our Board on September 4, 2017,” he added.
The meeting was held to educate membership of the Association on the Stock Market and to discuss the UT and the Capital Bank liquidation.
Mr Ababio said SEC, the Apex Regulator of Ghana’s Capital Market had one of its core mandates of ensuring investor protection; stating that in this direction, the Commission was committed to ensure that investors, and shareholders, know their rights through public education and awareness.
To the Shareholders Association, Mr Ababio said: “It is therefore, important that your role as a watchdog group, which is to monitor the activities of management and boards of directors of public companies on matters that impact the companies and report on same to shareholders and the Commission.
“As a shareholder, we appreciate that you take risks with your capital; that your decisions are driven by information available to you and the relevance of the information communicated”.
He noted that for their capital market to develop sustainably it was very critical that shareholders review and analyse the information available to them, consult with the necessary experts on matters that require further action, and play a key role in realising the values or expectations for which they make their investment decisions.
Mr Sampson K. Ashong, General Secretary, Shareholders Association on the Stock Market, Ghana, said following the recent collapsed of two local Banks, the Association in collaboration with shareholders was considering taking legal action to protect their interests.
He claimed that institutions like the SEC, the Bank of Ghana (BoG) and the Central Securities Depository (CSD) knew that the two banks were failing, and yet they did nothing, until they collapsed.
He said they were going back to consult the various institutions like the BoG, the SEC and the CSD, to find out what they would do to help them.
Mr Ashobg said if they realise that things were not working in their interest, going to court would be their last resort.
Mr Sas George, President, Shareholders Association on the Stock Market, Ghana, said as shareholders, their principal aim was not only to supply capital but to demand corporate efficiency, honesty, high productivity and reasonable profitability from the various institutions and companies.
Mr Kwame Boa-Amponsem, Operations Officer, CSD, said under the CSD system, there was total elimination of risk such as the loss, mutilation and theft of certificates associated with holding and trading of paper-based securities of investors.