29 August 2017, Sweetcrude, Lagos — Oando Plc has responded to an ongoing investigation by the Security and Exchange Commission, SEC, into an alleged gross abuse of corporate governance and financial mismanagement report filed by two of its shareholders.
According to a statement signed by the company’s Chief Compliance Officer & Company Secretary, Ayotola Jagun, and published by the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, on Monday, Oando said the allegations “have no merit as the issues raised have received board, shareholder attention and requires SEC approval”.
The company’s response was further to the initial statement by Oando on Friday, 14th July 2017 entitled ‘Oando PLC’s Official Statement on Claims of a SEC Investigation’.
Jagun said SEC has since commenced an inquiry in response to the petitions, adding that the company’s position remains that the petitions and other matters highlighted by the petitioners could have been directed to the company where it would have received the necessary clarification.
The petitioner, Ausbury Inc, is not a shareholder of the Oando Plc. but a shareholder in a company domiciled in a jurisdiction outside Nigeria which in turn holds shares in a Nigerian investment company that is a shareholder in Oando, the statement clarified.
He also said the second petitioner, Alhaji Dahiru Mangal “is an individual who requested clarification from the SEC on issues which he could easily have obtained from the Company and indicated in his petition to the SEC that he holds a 17.9% interest in Oando”.
However, Jagun said based on the company’s register of members maintained by First Registrars & Investor Services Limited, Mangal owns approximately 4% of Oando PLC’s shares in his personal capacity.
“He is yet to disclose beneficial ownership of 13.9% in accordance with Section 95 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, Cap. C20 LFN 2004 (‘CAMA’); failure to do so is a violation of CAMA and this has been flagged by the Company in writing to Alhaji Mangal and the SEC since Wednesday, 24th May 2017”.
From the SEC’s initial correspondence to date, Jagun said the company has provided the body with all documents requested, provided clarification on, and rebuttals to the issues raised and awaits a speedy conclusion of the inquiry.
“The Company will continue to fully co-operate with the SEC in the discharge of its duties as the capital markets regulator. As a public company listed on both the Nigerian and Johannesburg Stock Exchanges, we will provide full disclosure of the outcome as soon as the SEC inquiry is completed”.
“Oando’s Corporate Communications team is always available to respond to any inquiries by members of the public and the media”.
Meanwhile, the company said it is concerned about media houses going public with false and misleading information.
“As a public listed company, any false or misleading information has a materially adverse effect on the Company including but not limited to reputation damage, creating undue and to a certain extent illegal volatility in the share price and causing unfair losses to our shareholders. We, therefore, urge media houses to refrain and/or desist from further publications in future, without first verifying the accuracy of such facts from Oando,” the statement read.