The Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC, has registered over two million business names as at December 31, 2011. The Registrar General and chief executive officer of the Commission, Barrister Mahmud Bello made the disclosure in an interview with the Economic Confidential, an online economic magazine.
Breaking down the figure of the registered business entities, Bello said “As at 31st December 2011, the Commission has registered a total of 896,095 Companies, 1,917,670 Business Names and 47,421 Incorporated Trustees.”
He also disclosed that the commission would soon strike off about 50,000 companies that have remained dormant over the years and refused to file their annual returns even after registration.
He said the Commission had in accordance with the provisions of Section 525 CAMA struck off the names of over 9,000 companies from the Register which was published in the Official Gazette No. 76 Volume 95 of the federal government.
“Every Company is required to file Annual Returns within 18 months after incorporation and subsequently every year. And any company that refuses to file its annual returns shall be deemed to have ceased to exist as their names will be struck off from the Register. The Commission will also reject or turn down requests for due diligence from Banks and other regulatory bodies.”
Barrister Bello also told the Economic Confidential that the Commission would soon widen its enforcement activities by using the services of independent professionals to reach out to these unregistered businesses and get them registered. He said “Our state offices have also intensified their enforcement drive through regular inspection visits to verify the status of businesses generating in their area of activities. In addition, the Commission is liaising with contract awarding bodies both in the public and private sector to further enforce the practice of confirming the status of companies before contracts are awarded.”
The Registrar general of the commission also regretted that in spite of affordability of business registration many companies operate illegal without being registered. He said “We have observed that in spite of the establishment of offices in all states of the Federation and other efforts made to ease the process of registration of businesses, some people still carry on businesses without registration. This has created opportunities for unscrupulous elements to use such unregistered businesses to defraud unsuspecting citizens. This is unacceptable and a trend contrary to the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA). In order to stem this ugly practice, the Commission has made arrangements in its state offices to further simplify and ease the registration of companies. Public enlightment has also been intensified to educate people on the need to register.”
Read the full interview from this link: Economic Confidential Interview with CAC Boss