By Obedgiu Samuel
The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) is a semi autonomous body that was established in 1996, by the CMA Act, Cap 84. The Authority is responsible for promoting, developing, and regulating the Capital Markets Authority in Uganda, with the overall objectives of Investors protection and market efficiency.
The Authority reports and accounts to the Government through the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development.
There is gross incompetence at the Authority.
Just this year, Capital Markets Authority has lost two separate judicial review Court applications because because they are not following the law. They use person sentiments. They have abused their office;-
The first deals with an Exchange Trade Fund (ETF) filed by Tolea Securities Ltd and another filed by ALTX East Africa. Having read both these decisions, I should say, Capital Markets Authority is both incompetent and also applies Whims instead of the law when regulating our young financial markets.
In one of the judicial review decisions, Justice Lydia Mugambe awarded Ugshs 100 millions in damages and costs, just because the officials at Capital Markets Authority “Chose” to use personal feelings instead of the law. The judge also highlighted that they (CMA) are incompetent.
Secondly, Many youths in Uganda are being exploited by initial coin offerings of certain unregulated Cypto Assets or Crypto Currencies. We have complained to the Capital Markets Authority to release a cautionary statement, but they still have not listened to us.
However, Capital Markets Authority’s sister, Capital Markets Authority of Kenya, has issued a cautionary statement concerning Kenicoin and her concluded initial Coin Offering and Coin Trading Exchange (Kenicoin exchange).
But CMA of Uganda is still rigid to issue such cautionary. Yet in Kenya , the authority has warned the public regarding the nature and feature of the above capital raising and trading or any other ICO or trading in any Coin exchange that doesn’t have CMA’s approval.
Lastly, many Youths are being exploited through binary options trading platforms online. We have told the Capital Markets Authority to issue a cautionary statement about these online Securities trading platforms, but it seems they don’t have the competence to do so.
Properly understood, a binary option is a financial product where the buyer receives a payment or losses, their investments are based on if the option expires in the money.
They largely depend on the outcomes of a “Yes or No” proposition, that’s where the name “binary” is derived. These online platform like expert options are exploiting many Youths who are online.
Binary options have an expiry date and time. At the time of expiry, the price of the underlying Asset must be on the correct side of the strike price ( based on the trade taken) for the trader to make a profit.
A loss or gain on the trade is automatically credited or debited to the trader’s account when the option expires. These binary options largely target those who lack knowledge of how financial markets work. They look deceptively simple but they are not.
Capital Markets Authority also made some Regulations under certain laws of Parliament like the Securities Central Depository Act, 2009 that are illegal for example, Regulation 15 of the Securities Central Depository (SCD) Regulations numerous players in the industry like ALTX advised CMA that Regulation 15 contravenes Section 65 of the SCD Act and was therefore illegal. Capital Markets Authority does not agree with that assessment.