You probably have not heard of Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC’s “golden handshake”.

It involved the payment of 1.7 billion naira to 44 members of staff of SEC under Mounir Gwarzo as severance package in 2015.

But the administrative panel of inquiry set by the Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun to investigate the embattled SEC Director General Gwarzo, had faulted it.

It has alleged that the payment is one of the contraventions of the financial regulations by the embattled SEC DG, which led to the recommendation for his dismissal from the public service.

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But Gwarzo, in an email to Punch on Sunday, explained the reason behind the “golden handshake”.

“The ‘Golden Handshake’ exercise” Gwarzo explained, “was a voluntary retirement scheme designed by the commission for certain category of staff to exit the commission,” and “as an incentive to access the scheme, staff members were offered certain percentages of their allowances/remuneration.”

He maintained that contrary to claims that it was an extra judicial spending, “The scheme was duly approved by the Board of the commission at its meeting of March 12, 2015 and funded from the commission’s 2015 budget”.

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