The acting director-general of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms. Mary Uduk, has enjoined investors in the capital market who bought shares with different names to regularise their accounts in order to get the benefit of their investments.
This is even as the capital market committee (CMC) has extended the forbearance period to December 31, 2018, to enable investors regularise their accounts.
Uduk said this at a press briefing after the second capital market committee meeting in Lagos at the weekend.
The meeting is a periodic gathering of stakeholders in the Nigerian capital market to discuss capital market related matters.
Uduk stated that, “during the banking and insurance sector consolidation between 2004 to 2007, there were a lot of issues in the primary market because the banks or insurance companies came to the market to raise funds and during that period, because a lot of people were coming to the capital market for the first time, they saw the capital market as a place where they can make a lot of money so a lot of them bought shares in different names.
“Today those shares are not in the system, because if you are unable to identify yourself properly those shares cannot be properly captured in the system. We are saying come and regularise that situation and get back your shares which are being warehoused somewhere. There is absolutely no punishment attached to it, the SEC is not punishing anybody, we just want such individuals to come and regularise that transaction between now and December 31, 2018.”
According to her, the objective of doing that was to increase liquidity in the market because the shares were just there no trading on them, not only that, the investors cannot claim their dividends and that increases unclaimed dividend.
Uduk also said the meeting agreed that in addition to the physical delivery of annual reports and accounts, the existing pilot exercise of electronic distribution by public companies should continue, while efforts are made to enlighten shareholders and obtain their relevant e-mail addresses.
The meeting she said, also resolved that following the completion of the work by the committee on minimum operating standard, the Commission would work with trade group associations to implement the committee’s recommendations. The SEC boss expressed delight that the Nigerian capital market within the quarter under review witnessed some achievements in various segments of its operations.
These achievements she said, validate the continuous efforts of all market participants and include aggressive use of various social media platforms to boost financial literacy campaigns. She also announced an increase in the number of shareholders who have mandated their accounts for e-dividend payments to 2.55 million.
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