Internal restructuring at SEC for better focus

Tuesday, 11 September 2012 01:31 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  •  Most senior officialwith 28 years of market experience Dhammika Perera appointed Deputy Director General with oversight on surveillance, supervision and investigations
  • Acting DG Dissabandara to concentrate on capital market development
  • First stakeholder consultation fixed withbrokers on Friday

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) under new Chairman Dr. Nalaka Godahewa has affected the first internal restructuring for the better ensuring greater focus on two of its core areas – regulation and capital market development.

With effect from yesterday, senior most official and Director Investigations Dhammika Perera was made Deputy Director General with oversight on core areas surveillance, supervision and investigation. Director Supervision Namal Kamalgoda and Director Surveillance Chandu Epitawala will come under him along with Investigations Division

Acting Director General Hareendra Dissabandara who is also Director Capital Market Education and Training has been assigned with capital market development function.

The internal restructuring was discussed and unanimously approved at the first Commissioners’ meeting chaired by Godahewa on Friday. The move was announced to the SEC staff yesterday.

SEC Chairman Godahewa had said the new arrangement was to ensure better focus as well as optimise on the core functions of the SEC.

The post of Deputy Director General isn’t new as in the past there had been at least three who had held it.

The last was Malik Cader prior to him being promoted as Director General, whilst previously those who served as Deputy DG were Marina Fernando and Ajith Perera, with the latter serving under Kumar Paul’s regime as DG.

Most analysts said the promotion of Dhammika as Deputy DG was long overdue given his 28 years of experience in and dedication to capital market. It is also seen as succession planning for the DG post by the new SEC.

Dhammika came into the limelight recently when he was singled out by President Mahinda Rajapaksa as being in line with the Government’s vision whilst Tilak Karunaratne when he was SEC Chief labelled him for being not cooperative, apart from insinuating he was among the so-called mafia of investors. Being a no-nonsense professional as well as having served several DGs and Chairpersons before, Dhammika has denied Karunaratne’s allegations.

The near three-decade presence in capital market for Dhammika comprises of around nine years at the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE), where he served as Assistant Manager Surveillance, Assistant Manager Trading and Assistant Manager Listings and over 18 years at SEC, starting as Divisional Head, mostly as the Director Investigations, in addition to as Director External Relations and Market Development.

Dhammika also simultaneously held the post of Director Investigations at the Insurance Board of Sri Lanka for around four years, as well as Director Investigations of the Financial Intelligence Unit of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka for a year.

During the absence of a permanent DG, Dhammika also functioned as the Officer-in-Charge.

He is also well qualified, with a Degree in Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the Rajarata University of Sri Lanka. His research for the accomplishment of the MBA was incidentally titled ‘The Impact of Corporate Governance on Insider Dealing: An Empirical Examination in the Context of Companies Listed on the Colombo Stock Exchange’. He also holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Management from the same university.

Dhammika has also completed specialised studies such as Advanced Capital Markets, Investment Management and the Share Market as well as the Professional Stockbroking conducted by the Securities Institute of Australia.

Meanwhile, the first stakeholder meeting of new SEC Chairman Godahewa will be with stockbrokers on Friday. The move is part of his announced stance to the staff after assuming duties that the SEC must have regular consultation with capital market stakeholders. He had told staff that other market participants and stakeholders would be consulted for inputs over the next few weeks, in moving towards a sustainable and dynamic capital market benefiting all stakeholders.