Leave Investors Alone, Lagos Chamber Tells National Assembly
The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, LCCI believes Nigeria’s lawmakers are distracting investors through unwarranted probes and investigations.
They have therefore advised the National Assembly to apply greater discretion while exercising its investigative powers so as “to avoid distraction to private sector players, erosion of investors’ confidence and collateral damage to the economy.”
“We note in particular the responsibility of oversight and investigations as prescribed under Sections 88 and 89 of the Nigerian Constitution.
“However, we request that these investigative powers be exercised with greater discretion to avoid distraction to private sector players, erosion of investor confidence and collateral damage to the economy,” LCCI said in a statement signed by its Director-General, LCCI, Mr. Muda Yusuf, on Sunday.
“The LCCI believes, and in fact promotes the ideals of high ethical standards in business and will not condone or support infractions against the statutory laws by private sector entities.
“However, we will like to see a legislative-private sector interface characterised by mutual respect, fairness, and courtesy,” he added.
The chamber recommended that allegations and petitions received by the National Assembly about infractions by the private sector should be properly verified for credibility before presenting such to the media.
It gave instances such the alleged N30tn revenue loss and missing 228 vessels by the Senate Joint Committee on Customs, Excise, Tariffs and Marine Transport where 63 firms were accused of complicity in the alleged scam.
He said, “These are grave allegations that needed to be subjected to proper scrutiny before going public. The implications for the nation’s image and foreign investors’ perception are severe.
“Giving names of corporate organisations in the media over allegations that are not yet proven has considerable reputational cost and collateral damage to such companies. It has weighty consequences for the brand equity of such organisations.”