Some Chief Executive Officers (CEO) of companies in Nigeria on Wednesday identified weak corporate and individual regulatory framework as the cause of collapsed corporate governance in the country.
The stakeholders, who defined corporate governance at the ongoing 16th Nigerian Economic Summit as acceptable operational guidelines for corporate organisation, said the nation’s lost values contributed greatly toward failed companies.
The Managing Director of Greenish Trust Ltd, Mr Kayode Falowo, said that recent events in the nation”s financial sub-sector showed that weak regulatory framework was responsible for the collapse of corporate governance. Falowo also said that dismal stakeholders” integrity, in spite of subsisting laws, further contributed to the collapse of corporate governance.
Falowo further said at the CEOs” forum at the summit in Abuja, that “the unconscious jettison of standards in the nation made it impossible to enforce corporate governance”.
“Generally, while we bemoan the weak regulatory framework, the main concern remains that stakeholders have refused to assert themselves and do what is expected of them,” he said. In his contributions, Shell Nigeria Country Chairman, Mr Mutiu Sumonu, traced the problem of sustainable good corporate governance to the emerging transformation from sole ownership of companies to limited liability companies.
According to Sumonu, Nigerians are yet to appreciate the benefits of board of directors and shareholders, who by law are empowered to check the chairman and leverage the company to a profitable concern. He said, “Most board members in Nigeria still see their appointment on the board as patronage and hence lack the moral courage to challenge the chairman and question issues objectively.
“The other issue is that companies” boards in Nigeria are populated by family members, friends and colleagues, who compromise standard in other to maintain the status quo and protect their benefactor.”
Sumonu said that implementation of subsisting laws on who should be appointed companies directors and its strict enforcement as noticed in the banking sub-sector and capital market remains the nation’s selling point.
Earlier, the Chairman of the forum, Dr Christopher Kolade, identified the national pursuit of quality personnel in key sectors of the economy as one of the ways to achieve good corporate governance. Other factors that will contribute to good corporate governance, Kolade said, were stakeholders control and regulatory bodies proactive regulation.
He said that good corporate governance attracted quality foreign trade partners, integrity driven manpower and would create acceptable global brand for companies.