…says many are briefcase firms
About 44,000 companies have so far been delisted from the database of the Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, while 1.5 million companies have been registered.
The Registrar General of the CAC, Bello Mahmud, disclosed this in Abuja, Federal capital recently.
He said the development was sequel to several breaches of the Companies and other Matters Act, CAMA, and other extant regulations of the commission, notably, late and outright refusal to file returns.
He said, “So far, there is an improvement and a current ratio of 45 per cent. We are still checking on company records especially in terms of compliance for those who have not been filing.
“If we discover you are not a going concern, the law establishing us gives us the power to delist from our database.”
He said, “If we discover and write you first, second and third letter without reply, we now deem it that you are not a going concern; and we will delist you from our database.”
“So far, the first batch we delisted were about nine thousand (9000); and in the second batch, about thirty-five (35,000), totalling 44,000 firms delisted from our database and is still ongoing”, he said.
Mahmud regretted that, “unfortunately, these companies are “briefcase” companies, because when you check on the addresses given, you won’t find them. We are still compiling the list’ and before the end of this year, you will see more delisted companies”, he said.
He also stated that about 1.5 million firms have so far been registered by the commission.
Speaking on the clampdown on touts and illegal use of business names, the CAC boss said touts are no more in the premises of the commission “because if you can do it yourself you don’t even need to hire a lawyer and that is part of what the government has told us to do.
If you want to register your company now, you can do it yourself.”
“Just go to our portal and create an account for yourself. If you cannot do it on your own, then contact a lawyer, chartered Secretary or an Accountant. And these people can file documents on your behalf.
Only these categories can access our portal and your very self. Touts have been completely eliminated,” he disclosed.
He said as part of efforts by the government in instituting the Ease of Doing Business, the commission has reduced filing fees to make it easier for people.
“For anybody registering a company of one million to half a million, we have reduced such fees by fifty per cent. And from five million to any amount, we have reduced them by 25 per cent to encourage Ease of Doing Business”, he said.
On the Commission’s feat in information technology to drive the registration process, Mr. Mahmud said the “trend now is information technology(IT). You can’t do any online registration now as I told you without the use of IT. Our operations are ICT-based.”
“As we speak, anybody can register in both United States and United Kingdom without necessarily coming to Nigeria. You can file from anywhere in the world and you cannot do that if we are not ICT-based.”
He disclosed that the only challenge facing the commission now has to do with old records that have not been captured, saying that it was being addressed.
He said,“If you ask us online, a Certified True Copy(CTC) would be made available to you and payment online.”
Ganiyu Obaaro, with Agency report