SEC seals up fake fund managers’ office

Semiu Salami
Semiu Salami
Arunma Oteh, SEC DG

The Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, has sealed up the Port Harcourt and Sokoto offices of Women–In–Oil, an illegal fund manager and Ponzi Scheme.

SEC, in a statement, said that the action was in response to complaints against the organization by members of the investing public. It said that the action was in furtherance of the sanitization effort of the Nigerian Capital Market hinged on a policy of zero tolerance of rule infraction and other acts of indiscipline which the SEC is carrying out as part of a wider market reform effort.

The seal up operation was carried out by the Commission’s enforcement team led by Eric Elujekor, a Deputy Director supported by the SEC Police Unit.

SEC said that Women-in-Oil had taken undue advantage of unsuspecting investors (applicants) to reap them off by promising mouth-watering returns on their investment which the organization routinely failed to deliver on.

The Commission said that The illegal entity had even gone a step further to vest its operations with undeserved credibility by claiming that the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan was one of its backers.

SEC said that this was done in its bid to raise money from unsuspecting members of the public.

“Specifically, the organization had claimed to have Presidential assent to operate a phony women empowerment scheme which enables “financial breakthrough” for women. The Presidency has had cause to deny this claim publicly through the media,” it said.

Women – In – Oil purports to be an indigenous oil company with head office in Port Harcourt which obtains funds from members of the public to make them part owners of the company and its crude oil prospecting and mining project.

It informs such victims/unwitting members of the public that a company membership fee of N120,000.00 which ought to be paid by them had already been offset by the Federal Government courtesy of the bogey Presidential assent which the entity lays claim to.

Women–In–Oil however collects the sum of N8,700 as “cost of legal, certificate and local government verification” from its victims. The sum is made payable either en bloc or in two installments.

The entity claims to have a membership of over 200,000 women and to hoodwink its unsuspecting victims, the firm flaunts an unending laundry list of benefits of joining the group which include: monthly profit sharing of up to N20,000, healthcare coverage for medical bills for members’ families, widowhood income support.

Others are access to unsecured business loan, car ownership through extension of credit with long pay off period, housing allowance and home ownership through access to 30 year mortgage.

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