SEC Boss Urges Investors to Embrace E-dividend Registration

Acting Director General of SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk d

Goddy Egene

The Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC has enjoined more Nigerians to take advantage of the on-going electronic-dividend registration in a bid to reduce t unclaimed dividends as well as increase liquidity in the capital market.

Acting Director General of the SEC, Mary Uduk, made the call at an enlightenment programme on e-dividend and contemporary issues in the Nigerian capital market held in Enugu, Thursday.

Represented by the Head, Port Harcourt Zonal Office of the SEC, Mr. Obi Adindu, Uduk disclosed that the commission was currently leading the entire capital market industry in an effort to migrate all shareholders to an e-dividend regime.

“The essence of the e-dividend mandate management system is to eradicate or reduce to the barest minimum the incidence of unclaimed dividend. Unclaimed dividend is an undesirable feature of the Nigerian capital market which denies investors/shareholders the gains of participating in the capital market. It denies the economy access to the huge amount of money which should have accrued to shareholders and would have gone into circulation to oil the wheel of the economy.

“It is a consequence of the bottlenecks which are inherent in the erstwhile paper dividend warrant regime such as postal system inefficiency, change in investors’ addresses, poor fidelity and human fallibility in dividend payment processes, amongst others,” Uduk said.

According to her, the e-dividend regime bypasses these limitations by ensuring that dividends which do not exceed 12 years of issue are credited directly to an investors account after declaration by the paying company and within a stipulated payment period through simple interbank transfer.

The e-dividend registration exercise started on November 23, 2016. Each successful registration cost N150, however, between that time and March 31, 2018, SEC underwrote the registration cost for all investors that mandated. It is my pleasure to let us know, that a total of 2.4million accounts had been mandated.

“May I therefore, implore you all to key into the e-dividend registration exercise by visiting the nearest bank branch or registrar. In addition to migrating to the e-dividend regime yourselves, kindly tell everybody you know to do same in their best interest. I am informed that some registrars are present at this forum. I implore us to visit them and take advantage of the services they are providing to register for your E-Dividend, here and now,” the SEC boss said.

She disclosed that the commission is implementing various initiatives which are aimed at making our market deeper, vibrant and more effective.