By Giwa SHILE
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Tuesday said that about 30 per cent of investors had consolidated their accounts through the forbearance for multiple shares accounts.
The SEC Acting Executive Commissioner Corporate Services, Mr Henry Rowlands, , disclosed this in Lagos.
SEC recently introduced a forbearance window for multiple accounts to enable investors that bought shares with different names to regularise their accounts in order to get the benefits of their investments.
The commission in a bid to encourage many investors to consolidate their multiple subscriptions into one account recently extended forbearance deadline for multiple accounts to December 31.
Rowland said that a lot of investors were embracing the window unlike when it was newly introduced in the market.
“I can tell you that there is a response of 30 per cent compared with when we started the initiative.
“I can tell you clearly the number of people that have keyed into this window is encouraging.
“Initially, many people were reluctant because they thought that it’s going to be punitive. They thought that when they come in they will be reprimanded,” he said.
He said the commission and the market had to change the enlightenment language to encourage people to embrace the initiative.
Rowlands expressed optimism that the momentum would be sustained, and that going forward all stakeholders in the market would be part of publicity and enlightenment campaign.
Rowlands said SEC would partner the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Central Securities Clearing System, stockbrokers, registrars and other stakeholders to strengthen the enlightenment programme.
He added that the commission would work with all agencies that participated in the sale of shares during the banking consolidation to reach out to the affected investors.
Rowlands pleaded with investors who were yet to embrace the initiative to take advantage of the window.
“This window is not punitive, nobody is going to penalise any investor.
“We want to encourage all investors, even if you are not aware that you participated, go to your stockbroker, registrar and ask whether you have any multiple accounts with different name,” he said.
He explained that the unclaimed dividend in the market would drop drastically with multiple accounts regualrisation and electronic dividend payment.