Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX Group) Plc hosted the number one citizen, His Excellency, Muhammdu Buhari, GCFR, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria at the launch of its campaign, The Stock Africa Is Made Of.
The virtual event which took place on Tuesday, 18 May 2021 was held to amplify NGX Group’s positioning and commitment to the African financial markets as a leading capital market infrastructure provider, connecting Nigeria, Africa and the world, as well as spotlight the growth potential of the African continent.
In delivering his remarks prior to sounding the closing gong and bringing the day’s trading to a close, His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR stated, “It is my pleasure to join you all at this important event organised to amplify the positive narrative about Africa and its great potentials. Let me start by congratulating Nigerian Exchange Group Plc on its recently concluded demutualisation, which is the first in the country. I recall signing the Demutualisation Bill in August 2018, paving the way for the long awaited demutualisation of the then Nigerian Stock Exchange.”
“It is also important for me to highlight that the history of NGX Group is tied to that of the Nation itself founded 61 years ago at a pivotal time when Nigeria gained her independence. The Exchange continues to play its part in nation building by stimulating economic growth and providing a platform for businesses and individual to save and raise capital through innovation, diversified products and services, enabling regulatory environment and much more. The occasion of the demutualisation of The Nigerian Stock Exchange is yet a proud moment for all of us, and indeed all Nigerians deserve congratulations for this feat as it is the beginning of a new era for the capital market,” President Buhari added.
Speaking at the event, the Group Chairman, NGX Group Plc, Otunba Abimbola Ogunbanjo stated, “The Exchange has come a long way, through different leadership regimes – civilian and military – that have overseen multiple boom and bust economic dispensations within the Nigerian economy, to emerge as a leading integrated market infrastructure in Africa and the engine of growth for Africa’s largest economy. Our story is one birthed from resilience, collaboration, determination and continued focus on our vision. A true Africa story. With demutualisation, NGX Group is well positioned to enable strong economic growth and contribute its quota to the development of the Nigerian capital market, and the African Continent.”
On his part, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, NGX Group Plc, Mr. Oscar N. Onyema, OON noted that, “At Nigerian Exchange Group Plc, we have a vision to be the premier Exchange hub for Nigerian businesses and for the wider African economy building on the strong reputation and corporate governance the NSE has established over the years. As we march bravely into the NGX era, we look forward to impact creating partnerships that will unlock value for our stakeholders, whilst improving the state of the Nigerian economy. It is a period to reinforce on the global stage, our great African pedigree and the Stock Africa Is Made of.”
The unveiling event culminated in a Closing Gong Ceremony where the CEO, Nigerian Exchange Limited, Mr. Temi Popoola, CFA, stated, “I am delighted to have hosted His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, our special guest of honour. Today’s epochal Closing Gong Ceremony could not have been possible without Mr President’s support. The NGX era is indeed very exciting for us and we will continue to champion the growth of the African capital market through trade and investments that will facilitate Africa’s economic recovery and reposition the continent for sustainable economic development. Partnerships are a critical element of our strategy and we will continue to engage our stakeholders whose support is essential to the achievement of our aspirations in this NGX era.”
In her closing remarks, the CEO, NGX Regulation Limited, Ms. Tinuade Awe stated, “My deepest gratitude goes to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, for gracing us with his presence and honouring our invitation to close the market on the official launch day of the NGX era. This has truly been an inspiring event and we have our amazing line-up of speakers to thank for that. I must also thank our regulators, the entire capital market ecosystem and the Management and staff of Nigerian Exchange Group for the hard work and diligence that has set us firmly on the path of success. It has been an exciting journey to date, and I am confident that we will all work well together to achieve even greater heights in the NGX era.”
The event featured several key speeches and goodwill messages from industry veterans across the public and private sectors including Dr. Zainab Ahmed, Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Federal Republic of Nigeria; Otunba Richard Adeniyi Adebayo, CON, Honourable Minister of Trade and Investment, Federal Republic of Nigeria; Mr. Lamido Yuguda, Director General, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC); Alhaji Aliko Dangote, GCON, Chairman, Dangote Group; Mr. Jim Ovia, CON, Chairman, Zenith Bank Plc; Mr. Masai Ujiri, President, Toronto Raptors; Mr. Tony Elumelu, CON, Group Chairman, United Bank for Africa (UBA) & Founder, The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF); Mr. David Swchimmer, CEO, London Stock Exchange; Ms. Julie Becker, CEO, Luxembourg Stock Exchange; Mr. Eric Hespenheide, Board Chairman, Global Reporting Initiative; and Mr. Ben Llewellyn-Jones, Deputy British High Commission Lagos.
Award-winning singer, songwriter and producer Innocent ‘2Baba’ Idibia alongside the ‘boo of the booless’, Chike, provided first-class entertainment at the virtual event which was moderated by veteran Master of Ceremonies, Ik Osakioduwa.