SEC warns Nigerians against Ponzi schemes

The Securities and Exchange Commission on Sunday warned Nigerians to desist from investing their money in investment schemes being operated by persons or organisations that were not registered to carry out fund management functions.

The acting Director General of SEC, Ms Mary Uduk, gave the warning in a statement made available to our correspondent in Abuja on Sunday. She spoke in response to reports of various unregistered schemes luring unsuspecting Nigerians with tempting returns.

Urging investors to be wary of any investment proposing a return level that was unreasonably high, Uduk advised members of the public to always ascertain whether such fund manager and the products being offered were registered with the SEC.

Uduk said that the capital market was properly positioned to provide benefits to Nigerians.

According to her, SEC has been doing a lot in terms of investor education to assist people understand issues surrounding the capital market.

She said, “This is for the all-important purpose of ensuring that the gains of your participation, be these dividends, proceeds from share sales/transfers, etc accrue to you seamlessly without sweat and in the shortest time possible.

“The purpose is also to ensure that you do not fall victim to the antics of fraudsters who purport to be able to double any amount of money you make available to them as investment value.

“These fraudsters or promoters of Ponzi schemes are the false prophets of the investment environment; they are the ill-wind that blows no good and at whose sight you must flee. They are to be avoided.

“This is one message you must keep spreading to family, friends, relations and acquaintances in order to save them from the agony of loss of their hard-earned money.

“Please note that anyone that subscribes to these illegal activities does so at their own risk.”

Uduk added that the commission had undertaken various initiatives to make the capital market more user-friendly so that people can participate in it with greater ease, comfort and convenience.

She further disclosed that the SEC was leading the entire capital market industry in an effort to migrate all shareholders to an e-dividend regime.

According to her, the essence of the e-dividend mandate management system is to eradicate or reduce the incidence of unclaimed dividends to the barest minimum.

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