Lagos, Nigeria, March 9, 2017 — IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, Institute of Directors’ Centre for Corporate
Governance and Women in Management, Business and Public Service (WimBiz)
are collaborating with the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) to
strengthen the case for greater participation of women in the socio-economic
development of Nigeria.
On International Women’s Day, the stakeholders
came together at a roundtable session to discuss the theme “Promoting
Gender Inclusive Boards, Organisations and Societies.” The discussions
focused on progress, challenges and solutions to improve gender diversity
on boards of companies in Nigeria. Participants included government officials,
regulators, businesses, industry leaders and other experts.
Anastasia Braimoh, Deputy-Director and Head
of Legal Department, SEC Nigeria, said “SEC is focused on developing transparent
and efficient companies that will attract and retain investments, strengthen
the capital market and contribute to economic development. With the support
of IFC and other stakeholders, we are leading the promotion of a more balanced
board with greater gender diversity to boost efficiency and overall productivity.”
Although the Central Bank of Nigeria issued
a directive that 30% of all board compositions in Nigerian banks must be
women, a WimBiz 2014 study found only 19% participation of women on boards
in banks. Eme Essien Lore, IFC Country Manager for Nigeria, said, “Research
indicates that firms with a diverse directorate are better contributors
to economies. Therefore, IFC, in partnership with the SEC, is promoting
gender diversity on boards. This is helping strengthen Nigerian companies’
ethical reputation, increasing transparency and investor confidence and
improving their financial performance.”
Globally, IFC has nearly reached a 30% target
of female representation on IFC-nominated directors in companies it has
invested in and it continues to aim for full parity in the near future.
Corporate governance refers to the structures
and processes by which companies are directed and controlled. Good corporate
governance makes companies more accountable and transparent to investors,
which encourages new investments, boosts economic growth and provides employment
IFC’s Africa Corporate Governance program
is funded by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), Switzerland,
and IFC is the implementing partner for the program.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is
the largest global development institution focused on the private sector
in emerging markets. Working with 2,000 businesses worldwide, IFC uses
its six decades of experience to create opportunity where it is needed
most. In financial year 2016, long-term investments in developing countries
rose to nearly US$19 billion, leveraging its capital, expertise and influence
to help the private sector end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.
For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
SECO is Switzerland’s competence center
for all core issues relating to economic policy. SECO’s economic development
cooperation strives to achieve sustainable growth. Such growth is sustainable
if it creates jobs, helps to increase productivity, to reduce poverty,
inequalities and global risks. For more information, visit www.seco-cooperation.ch.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC),
Nigeria is the apex regulatory institution of the Nigerian capital market
supervised by the Federal Ministry of Finance. The Commission has
evolved over time having started with the establishment of the Capital
Issues Committee in 1962 by the government as an essential arm of the Central
Bank of Nigeria. The Investments & Securities Act (ISA) No. 45 of 1999
was repealed by the ISA No. 25 of 2007 which gives the Commission the powers
to achieve its objectives which include regulating the capital market with
a view to protecting investors and developing the capital market in order
to enhance its allocative efficiency, and pave the way for a private sector
The Act also empowers the Commission with
a board of nine (9) members including the Chairman, the Director General,
three Executive Commissioners, two Non-Executive Commissioners, representatives
of the Federal Ministry of Finance and Central Bank of Nigeria. For more
information, please visit www.sec.gov.ng.