Companies Not Remitting Annual Returns May Be Banned From Public Contracts – CAC

The Corporate Affairs Commission is currently seeking the approval of the Federal Executive Council, to ensure that registered entities do not benefit from government contracts unless they filed their annual returns

The outgoing Chairman, Corporate Affairs Commission Governing Board, and Nigerian Ambassador designate to Spain, Mr. Ademola Seriki, said this during an appreciation dinner in his honor, which was organized by the CAC.

In a statement Seriki said the adoption of ‘Good Standing Certificate’ was particularly historic, pointing out that, “most companies don’t pay annual returns and it’s a problem”.

He expressed concerns that people who do not pay annual returns bid for procurements and contracts, and oftentimes, won in the exercise even though they do not comply with their financial obligations to the government.

He stated that there was need to put an end to the trend going forward.

He added: “So, we need to pay our annual returns and we have started the issue of Good Standing Certificate which is awaiting FEC approval. It’s going to the president and by God’s grace, I hope it will be approved.”

Seriki, also said, the introduction of notification alerts on accounts transactions by the commission remained not only formidable but unprecedented.

The former CAC Chairman said he would love to see the reforms initiatives actualised to usher a regime of world class services in company registration in Nigeria.

He said: “We did something formidable in the issue of Good Standing Certificate, it has not been done in history because most companies don’t pay annual returns and it’s a problem.

“And you will see a company that would bid for procurements of hundreds of billions of dollars and never paid annual returns in 20 to 30 years.

“In a very civilised country, even in Ghana, I was in Ghana two weeks ago and I met with the registrar general- all companies that have not paid their annual returns, they have to pull down their names and will no longer be valid.”

He added,”People register companies to buy properties as a matter of hiding their identities from the public – they should be paying annual returns.”

On the alert notifications option the outgoing chairman, assured that it will stem abuses from unilateral accounts alterations without full consent of interest parties.

He said: “Husband and wife who have being together do fight, either of them will go behind and change the ownership or siblings when their father and mother die, you know all kinds of things. People do a lot of illegalities and they commit such without having to regret it.

“So, when you opt for notification alert, you get a short code, you get a text message and you get email that your file had been tampered with.

“And that way, you are on the alert and you can go back to CAC and say look, I didn’t do this.”

He added: “We have thousands of cases where people change information without the principal owner’s consent or knowledge.”

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