SEC may sanction Ecobank, FBN over e-dividends

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THE Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC has threatened to sanction banks who had failed to comply with the commission’s directive on e-dividends registration charges meant to be free from December 14th, 2015 till March 14th, 2016 and thereafter, N100 charges.

According to SEC, ECO bank and FirstBank charges the few investors turning for the exercise N3, 150 and N1, 050 respectively far above the N100 which it said should still be free. It disclosed that investigation show that not all banks had complied with the fee.

SEC had directed in December, 2015 that shareholders and investors must visit their registrars and banks to complete their e-dividend mandate form, a process which seeks to eradicate the difficulty encountered by retail investors in claiming their dividends through their savings accounts.

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The commission said that it was considering to extend the 90 days free period billed to expire on March 4 as a result of some irregularities noticed in the process and the low turn-out of shareholders considered to have resulted from low publicity.

SEC, through its corporate communications manager, Naif Abdusalam said it would ensure that defaulting banks did not go unpunished. The commission has also said it would be embarking on another round of sensitisation campaign specifically in Lagos so as to increase the level of people’s awareness on the process. “The sensitisation campaign is scheduled for Lagos from February 8 to 11, 2016 beginning with a three day road show to be rounded off with a Town Hall meeting on the last day.”

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