The Paramount Chief of Tamale, Naa Yab Gulkpe-Naa Alhaji Alhassan Abdulai, has underscored the urgent need for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to establish an office in the city to serve the growing needs and desire of the populace to invest in the Ghanaian capital market.
According to him, a lack of understanding of the capital market coupled with low awareness creation and limited investment education, especially in the peri-urban and rural areas, make indigenes of these areas vulnerable to fraudulent schemes.
“Having face-to-face interaction with someone builds confidence and credibility when it comes to making investments. And I believe with your physical presence here in Tamale, a lot of these fraudulent activities would stop or drastically reduce because you would always be there to educate the public, and the public can also come to you for enquiries about suspicious investment schemes,” he said.
Naa Yab Gulpke-Naa said this through the Tuu-Naa Abdulai Sufyan, who chaired ‘Time with the SEC’ forum in the Sagnarigu Municipality of the Northern Region.
Under the theme: ‘The Role of the SEC in the Capital Market’, the heavily-attended event brought together participants from various institutions within and outside Tamale. They included business owners, business managers, heads of financial and banking institutions, teachers and students of tertiary and second cycle institutions.
While commending the SEC for working assiduously to ensure sanity, transparency and fairness in the capital market, he urged them to do more by continuing to take steps to bring perpetrators of Ponzi and pyramid schemes to book.
He assured SEC of the readiness of his paramountcy to assist the institution whenever they were ready to set up an office so as to make it easier for the public to have access to them whenever the need arises.
The SEC’s Director-General, Ogbarmey Tetteh, stated that the conference in Tamale was a component of a national initiative to increase public awareness of the SEC’s operations, various capital market participants, laws governing the capital market, where and how to buy company shares, updates on the government bailout programme, and other topics.
“Capital is important in every economy and there is, therefore, the need to understand how capital can be accessed and be deployed. When it comes to capital, it is important to also understand that within the financial market, one can look at the short term of the money market and then the long term of the capital market,” he said.
The Director-General mentioned that the commission will empower the populace with information that will enable them to leverage the potential of the capital market in raising capital for business and growing savings through investors.
“We are here to let you know that the capital market is not reserved for a select few but for everyone willing and able to pay the price of getting relevant knowledge in order to make informed choices regarding their money matters – be it individuals, families or the corporate,” he said.
Underscoring the essence of the SEC, Mr. Tetteh said the regulator has the mandate to regulate and promote the growth and development of an efficient, fair and transparent securities market in which investors and the integrity of the market are protected.
“We do this, among other things, through our licensing regime, supervision — both on and off-site, rules and regulations as well as enforcement action and market education”, he explained.
Mr. Tetteh also assured the Paramount Chief of Tamale of the SEC’s willingness to establish an office in Tamale in the future.