SEC tackles court ruling vindicating OANDO Plc

SEC Oando Plc

SEC tackles court ruling vindicating OANDO Plc


 

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has faulted reports that a shareholder of Oando Plc, purportedly obtained a judgment from the Federal Capital Territory High Court against the commission.

SEC in a statement on its official Twitter handle, @SECNigeria, said: “The attention of the Securities and Exchange Commission has been drawn to several publications in the media, where it is reported that a shareholder of Oando Plc, purportedly obtained a judgment from the Federal Capital Territory “The commission wishes to inform the general public that it was never at any time served with court processes with respect to the purported matter at the FCT High court.

“The commission will consequently take all necessary steps to verify and set aside the purported decision of the said court.”

Earlier publications in the media had reported that Engr. Patrick Ajudua, an Oando shareholder, took it upon himself to legally challenge the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in a suit filed at the High Court of the FCT.

The disgruntled shareholder, filed that the directive of SEC suspending Oando’s annual general meeting was in breach of his right to freedom of association as guaranteed under Section 40 of the Nigerian Constitution and Articles 9, 10 & 11 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights. According to the reports, Ajudua secured his big win in court on Tuesday, February 23, 2021.

In a hearing presided over by Honorable Justice O. A Musa, all cases filed were granted in his favor. Engr. Patrick who has painfully endured the SEC’s infringement of his rights as a shareholder and an individual, for the past two years, was the much needed respite that the shareholders required especially at a time when many are grappling for survival following the country’s second recession in three years.

In 2019, SEC suspended the AGM of Oando indefinitely. AGM’s are an important platform for the protection of the shareholders of a company, furthermore they are a legal requirement for all publicly listed companies.

By being listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) a company is by virtue owned by her shareholders, thus ultimate control and the destiny of a company should lie in the hands of said shareholders.

Section 81 of the Companies & Allied Matters Act ascribes to every member of an incorporated company, who has fully paid for his or her shares, a right to attend all the shareholders’ meetings of such a company; and to speak and vote at such shareholders’ meetings.

According to Patrick Ajudua, the SEC has denied him this right over the last two years. According to a press statement issued by Oando Plc dated July 20, 2020, the suspension of the AGM has also resulted in the inability of the company’s Directors to lay before the shareholders for approval, the company’s 2018 audited financial statements; inability to appoint auditors to hold office for the 2019 financial year; and the inability of the company to meet its FYE 2019 NSE Filing of Accounts obligation due date of March 31, 2020; amongst others.