A recent shake-up in the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) which led to the removal of its acting director-general, Abdul Zubair, had the backing of the presidency, Premium Times NG reports.
Last Friday, a Federal Ministry of Finance statement in Abuja announced Mr Zubair’s immediate removal as the acting director-general. He was subsequently posted to the External Relations Department and was replaced by Mary Uduk.
Other top officials were also redeployed, including Reginald Karawusa as acting Executive Commissioner, Legal & Enforcement; Isiyaku Tilde as acting Executive Commissioner, Operations, and Henry Adekunle as acting Executive Commissioner, Corporate Services.
Since the redeployment exercise, accusing fingers have been pointed at the Minister of Finance, whom some aggrieved shareholders of Oando PLC accused of working against the process to audit the financial records of the oil and gas firm.
On Sunday, the National President, Trusted Shareholders Association of Nigeria (TSAN), Mukhtar, and the National Coordinator, Proactive Shareholders Association (PROSAN), Taiwo Oderinde, in a joint statement, accused the minister of “desperate attempts to shield Oando from probe.”
They called on President Muhammadu Buhari to order her immediate sack for causing the suspension of the former director-general of SEC, Mounir Gwarzo, and removal of Mr Zubair.
“We demand the immediate sack of the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, for her unwholesome interference in the smooth operation of the capital market.
“We believe the minister is clearly working to protect her friends in Oando Plc from the impending embarrassment that findings from the forensic audit may cause them,” the shareholders said.
The minister has since denied any wrongdoing.
Oluyinka Akintunde, her spokesperson, dismissed the allegations as untrue and an attempt to tarnish her image.
“The allegations are absolutely untrue. The minister’s accusers are bringing sentiments that do not have any bearing with the matter at hand just to tarnish her image. The minister has not interfered in the operations of any agency under the Ministry of finance, including SEC,” Mr Akindunde said.