According to Barclays Bank, any shareholder who has not claimed their dividends for the last three years risk their dividends and shares being surrendered to the relevant regulatory authority.
In a letter dated June 6, this year, Barclays Bank ordered its shareholders to urgently update their contact and address details with their stockbrokers and the company’s registrar and to enquire from the Barclays Registrar on whether they have any unclaimed dividends pending in their time.
But majority of the people are yet to realise the personal and economic significance of the new law. It is argued that locals must learn to appreciate that their hard earned lifelong assets should be well documented and preserved by being more businesslike.
Learning not to throw away savings and assets must become a priority for every Kenyan. Prior to enactment of the Law, financial institutions made colossal profits from thousands of depositors, a lacuna which the new law seeks to address.
The board manning the Unclaimed Financial Assets Authority will be comprised of five people appointed by the minister for Finance, and the Treasury Permanent Secretary and a chief executive officer.
The Government will therefore seize billions of shillings in assets that financial institutions have been sitting on after their owners either passed away or failed to claim.
The list of what is defined as unclaimed financial assets in the law includes travellers’ cheques, money orders, cheques, drafts, demand and savings or matured time deposits with a bank or financial institution.