27th August, 2010
The Nigerian stock exchange has shed 32.5 percent of its workforce to restore investorsâ€™ confidence in the troubled bourse after a recent shakeup in its top leadership, a spokesman said Thursday.
â€œThis decision was taken only after considerable thought and analysis of the current realities facing the exchange,â€ Sola Oni said in a statement.
He said the exercise saw the workforce reduced to 197 from 292, adding that those laid off would get a payoff.
â€œThe exchange wishes to assure all stakeholders that this decision is in conformity with its strategic vision to be the leading stock exchange in the African region,â€ he added.
The job cuts come barely one month after Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke, the director general, was replaced by Emmanuel Ikazoboh, pending the appointment of a permanent head by the stock regulator, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Aliko Dangote, the exchange president ranked by Forbes as one of the richest men in Africa, was suspended along with other council members pending the determination of a related court case.
Independent investigators have been appointed to carry out a probe into the allegations of financial mismanagement and poor oversight of the exchange. N11 billion fraud is said to have been perpetrated at the exchange.
The Nigerian stock market, sub-Saharan Africaâ€™s second largest, lost 70 percent of its value in 2008-2009 as a result of the global recession and a major banking crisis in the country, the worldâ€™s eighth largest oil exporter.