The Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has been fined N500 million by the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRC) has fined t over misstatement in its audited financial statements for the year 2018.
The FRC, in notice to the agency, tagged ‘Suspension and Restatement of NIMASA’s Audited Financial Statements,’ stated that the action was taken in accordance with the FRC Act 2011 (as amended) and the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria-Guidelines/Regulations for Inspection and Monitoring of Reporting Entities.
The notice read in part: ‘The Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRC) hereby issues a public notice regarding the suspension and restatement of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency’s (NIMASA) audited financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2018.
“Suspension of FRC Registration Numbers: The FRC registration numbers of certifiers of NIMASA’s 2018 Audited Financial Statement, Dr. Bashir Jamoh
(FRC/2017/CIANG/00000016699) and Chudi Offodile (Unregistered), are hereby suspended.
“This suspension renders them incapable of certifying any financial statements in Nigeria.
“Withdrawal and Restatement of 2018 Audited Financial Statements: The 2018 Audited Financial Statements of NIMASA are hereby withdrawn, and NIMASA is directed to restate its 2018 audited financial statements. NIMASA is required to publish, within seven (7) working days from the date of this notice, in at least two national newspapers (full page), that their 2018 financial statements and returns have been withdrawn for noncompliance with Financial Reporting Standards.
“The FRC will immediately post this information on its website and inform other regulatory agencies that the defective financial statements and returns have been withdrawn for restatement.
‘NIMASA is directed to begin the process of restating the 2018 audited financial statement in accordance with the FRC Act. This restatement will form the basis for the preparation and submission of audited financial statements for the years ended December 31, 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022.
‘NIMASA is required to file the restated financial statements for 2018, together with the management letters issued by their external auditors, with the Council within 60 days.
‘Penalty Imposed: The Council hereby imposes a Type 6 penalty of N500,000,000 (Five Hundred Million Naira) for the withdrawal of the 2018 financial statement, in line with Regulation 18 of the FRC Guidelines/Regulations 2014.
‘The Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria emphasizes its commitment to upholding financial reporting standards and ensuring the accuracy and reliability of financial statements.
‘This action against NIMASA serves as a reminder to all reporting entities of their responsibility to comply with prescribed standards and regulations.’
Moreover the Executive Secretary/Chief Executive of FRC, Rabiu Olowo, within the week unveiled a four-point strategic agenda to transform and relaunch the Council to the global audience.
Olowo who made this known at a media stakeholder roundtable held in Lagos, said the agenda has an acronym “DOSE”: D for digitisation, O-for operational excellence, S–stakeholders engagement and E for enforcement.
‘The purpose is to set high standards of corporate governance, reporting, auditing, and holding to account those responsible for delivering them. The significance of this is that FRC is integral to the roadmap of providing confidence to investors as Nigeria embarks on a journey towards a renewed hope where the strength of our businesses and government institutions is of utmost importance to our future success as nation,’ Olowo said.
He revealed that FRC had witnessed evidence where numerous entities and government institutions were falling short of the high standards expected under the FRC Act 2011, noting that the onus now rests on the shoulders of the present leadership to ‘transform the FRC into a new, robust, independent, and high-performing regulator comparable to its peers globally.’
Olowo stated that the bedrock of the transformation agenda would be to ensure maximum compliance with the FRC Act 2011 (as amended), and other statutory instruments released by the Council.
‘FRC intends to give full credibility to any financial statements coming out of Nigeria in a way that investors can rely on the information in the statements. We shall see a new FRC that will be firm and fair in carrying out her mandate; hold corporates and individuals accountable; restore confidence in corporate reports and governance in the Nigerian economy to enhance the Renewed Hope Agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu,’ he stated.
He explained that the Council resolved to establish the Corporate Reporting Academy in the next one year in collaboration with all financial institutions in the country.
More so, in order to curb incessant acts of malfeasance, he said that President Tinubu would unveil the Code of Corporate Governance for public sector in the first quarter of 2024.