The Acting Director-General, Securities and Exchange Commission, Ms. Mary Uduk, has said the Capital Market Committee, in a bid to encourage many investors to consolidate their multiple subscriptions into one account, has extended the forbearance for multiple accounts to December 31.
In a statement issued on Sunday by the commission, Uduk also enjoined investors in the capital market that bought shares with different names to regularise their accounts in order to get the benefits of their investments. The CMC meeting is a periodic gathering of stakeholders in the Nigerian Capital Market to discuss capital market-related matters.
Uduk said, “During the banking and insurance sector consolidation between 2004 and 2007, there were a lot of issues in the primary market because the banks or insurance companies came to the market to raise funds. 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 could 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; SEC is not punishing anybody. We just want such individuals to come and regularise that transaction between now and December 31, 2018.
“The objective is that it will increase liquidity in the market because the shares are just there; no trading on them. Not only that, the investors cannot claim their dividends too 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.
She said 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.
“We also enjoined trade group associations that are yet to register with the commission to register immediately, while the capital market operators are expected to register with their respective trade group associations on or before December 31, 2018 and advised to constitute a market-wide financial technology committee to develop a fintech framework for the Nigerian Capital Market,” she said.