By Ossom Raphael
Abuja – The Federal Government on Thursday, tasked the newly inaugurated board of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRCN), to prioritise the review of the draft National Code of Corporate Governance to accommodate stakeholders’ contributions and come up with a more acceptable code of Corporate governance.
The new board is made up of 23 members including Mr. Adedotun Sulaiman as Chairman and Mr. Daniel Asapokhai as the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive Officer of the Council.
The Minister of Industry Trade and Investment, Dr Okechukwu Enelama at the inauguration in Abuja, said the event was significant, given the critical role of the FRC to ensure that economic agents in Nigeria produce and publish high quality financial information that underpin the efficient working of our capital markets and indeed the overall economy.
Enelamah, said that government was engaging in wide-ranging reforms aimed at diversifying the economy as well as attracting investment into various sectors of the economy.
He, urged the Council to realign it’s mode of operation to ensure the country move up 20 places in the global ease of doing business rankings, said that government
“The investment case is stronger when investors and other stakeholders have increased confidence that their interests are protected. This is where the work of the Council becomes relevant to our economic recovery and growth – ensuring the existence of high quality standards in financial reporting and corporate governance and enforcement of compliance with such standards.
“May I also seize this opportunity to remind you that the government is irrevocably committed to moving Nigeria up at least 20 places in the global Ease of Doing Business Rankings and therefore request that you realign your operations in this direction and remain business-friendly.
“The Board should also take as a priority, the review of the draft National Code of Corporate Governance (NCCG) with a view to accommodating stakeholders’ contributions and come up with a more acceptable code of corporate governance. In doing this, I recommend that you follow strictly all the processes and procedures necessary for such an exercise” Enelamah said.
The Chairman, FRCN, Mr. Adedotun Sulaiman was confident that the Board will support the Management in resident the accord of all stakeholders and restore public confidence in the Council’s effort to promote higher standards of financial reporting and corporate governance in the country.
Mr. Sulaiman, noted that in going forward, the FRCN will be more conservative, less belitrend, less controversial in the discharge of its statutory responsibilities, even as he stated that the Council will engage constructively with relevant stakeholders and forged strategic alliances with other relevant regulatory agencies and organisations.
According to Sulaiman, “it is pertinent to inform you that this board and management will carry out its function to the highest level of professionalism and ensure that the FRCN going forward will be more conservative, less belitrend, less controversial in the discharge of its statutory responsibilities without been any less firm, any less acceptive, authoritative or effective.
“We therefore plan to focus on this area as we settle down for business in order to enhance government effort in the area of transparency and the fight against corruption.
“We will constructively engaged with relevant stakeholders and forged strategic alliances with other relevant regulatory agencies and organisations. The new board shall remain open to constructive dialogue and critic from all stakeholders.
“The board will focus on rebuilding on the confidence and the integrity of financial reporting and the robustness of Corporate governance policies in Nigeria and work towards securing the support and buy-in of all stakeholders: the government, the private sector is not for profit sector, as well as international community, Academia and Civil society in support of achieving our objectives” Sulaiman said.
Recall that on January 9, the Federal Government ordered the immediate removal and the replacement of the Executive Secretary and the reconstitution of the board of the Council.
There are three statutory committees of the Board and the number of meetings of Board of parastatals is restricted to a maximum of 4 times a year.