SEC Suspends Summa Guarantee & Trust Company

The management of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced the suspension of Summa Guarantee & Trust Company Plc and its sponsored individuals from all capital market activities, effective from November 20, 2013.

According to SEC, Summa Guarantee & Trust Company, a stockbroking firm, “failed to address issues regarding non-payment of regulatory penalties, filing of false/misleading returns, and overstatement of its share capital.” The Exchange Commission further noted that the company also failed “to address concerns raised by the Commission on the valuation of its offshore investments in an unquoted security.”

The market regulator said, Summa Guarantee & Trust Company and its sponsored individuals “shall remain suspended for non-compliance with regulatory directives till further notice from the Commission.”

Closure of Royal Benchmark Limited
Few weeks ago, SEC enforces closure of the offices of Royal Benchmark Limited, an illegal capital market operator based in Ibadan, Oyo State.

This is coming only a few days after the Exchange Commission took a similar action against another illegal operator based simultaneously in Port Harcourt and Sokoto and on the heels of earlier enforcement actions taken in Lagos and Jos against unregistered and unlawful operators in the course of 2013.

The build up to the enforcement action against Benchmark Nigeria Limited happened by way of reports to the SEC by victims that one Ade Adesina who purported to be the Managing Director/CEO of Royal Benchmark Limited of No. 11, Ademiluyi Close, by Bovas Filling Station, Kogi Street, Bodija, Ibadan, Oyo State was collecting monies in various sums from unsuspecting members of the public under the pretence that same monies were being invested in the capital market

Subsequent thorough investigations conducted by SEC showed that neither Ade Adesina nor Royal Benchmark Limited was registered to perform any function in the capital market. Their operations therefore ran counter to the prescriptions of the extant law governing operation in the capital market.

According to the Director General of the SEC, Arunma Oteh, “This string of closures by the Commission should send a strong, unequivocal message to illegal fund managers and sundry perpetrators of indiscipline and malfeasance in the capital markets that it is time they sought worthier endeavor. Illegal entities erode the integrity stock in our markets in addition to introducing hapless investor publics to the agony of loss of value. The SEC frowns severely at their existence.”