Business

SEC: N29bn claimed via account harmonization

The Securities and Exchange Commission has stated that about N29 billion of unclaimed dividends have been claimed by investors through the introduction of regularisation of multiple accounts.

The SEC introduced the regularisation of multiple accounts in 2015 where it requested all shareholders with multiple accounts to harmonise their accounts by filing e-dividend mandate forms and submitting same to their banks or stock brokers for onward transmission to their respective registrars Director General of the SEC, Mr. Lamido Yuguda stated this during a hearing on the need to investigate the rising value of inclined dividends, unremitted withholding tax on dividends and their attendant effects on nation’s economy organised by the House of Representatives in Abuja, Wednesday.

The SEC DG said the commission was seeking that the issue of unclaimed dividends be brought to an end due to the importance of dividends in maintaining and sustaining investments in the capital market. Yuguda stated the SEC had repeatedly canvassed and maintained that the most viable option was the removal of the 12-year bar for investors to claim their dividends imposed by CAMA.

He said, additionally, accumulated unclaimed dividends should be invested through a capital market vehicle that will focus on critical infrastructure development for the benefit of investors.

This, he said, would be a win all round, as the incentive for accumulating unclaimed dividends will be curbed, the investors who earned the dividends will benefit and the taxes levied on the capital market vehicle will generate the much needed revenue for the government.

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