Restore Stability in Stock Market, Obasanjo Tells SEC
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Thursday told the leadership of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to work hard and ensure that stability, credibility and transparency are restored in the country's stock market.
Obasanjo, who made this charge while receiving the Director-General of the Commission, Mounir Gwarzo, at his residence in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital, said the present economic recession could only be fought successfully if confidence, stability, credibility and transparency could be guaranteed at the stock market.
He said Nigeria requires an all-encompassing economic strategy to get out of her current economic recession, noting that "when we are in a situation we are now, situation of recession, I think it must be clear to all of us that we must do something quickly to get us out of recession," adding that, "there is no doubt that your own area of activity has a key role to play. You have to work on investment, you have to look for fund.
"Our children should start to learn and understand the workings of stock market. In the Military, we were specially trained to know much about stock market and stocks exchange. It is important that our children should understand and know it.
"We must also try to create confidence in market system generally and in the stock market. Over the years, many people have lost confidence in the market. A man who was a billionaire yesterday, has become a millionaire now, and a millionaire yesterday, has now become 'thousandnaire'".
On the Commission's visit to Abeokuta, Gwarzo said the Commission was in Abeokuta in continuation of Financial Literacy and Quiz Competition in primary and secondary school levels as part of effort to inculcate financial culture in the young ones.
Gwarzo said "one of the things we are doing now, the Financial Literacy, is to inculcate the culture of financial knowledge at the primary and secondary school levels, and that is why we are in Abeokuta. We have also been implementing the initiatives within the master plan, we did the electronic dividends. It is something that has been ongoing for quite a while.
"The corporate governance scorecard that we have launched, we have done a lot. So that our children will grow up to understand the financial market, and you can't divorce financial market from the economy, it is very important for the people at young age to know the importance of financial market and what the economy is all about."
Gwarzo, however, hinted that diploma and degree courses would soon be offered in various universities and colleges in the country for better knowledge of activities of the financial market.
"The starting point is to understand financial market, both the banking side and financial market side. Our target as we go along, in the next three to four years, we want to see that our universities graduate students, specialising in financial market. What happens now is that anybody that reads finance, you did little bit of financial market.
"But, we want to expand the scope to ensure that we have certificate, diploma and degree in financial market", he added.