ICSAN Stakeholders to Dimensionalise, Proffer Solutions to FG Takeover of Unclaimed Dividends
As investors’ unclaimed dividends and customers’ dormant deposits in financial institutions are about to be turned over to the government as caretaker, the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSAN) has expressed its uneasiness with the plan, hence its decision to hold a public forum for stakeholders to dimensionalise the issues and create a genuine solution.
Addressing the media in Lagos today, the Corporate Members and Training Committee, ICSAN, Chair, Mrs Abiola Lasehinde declared that the Institute as thought leaders will not be shirking in its legitimate roles of creating enduring and fair solution to issues. Among others, she noted part of its responsibilities are “to stimulate the interests of her members working as corporate professionals in formal sector and make them contribute positively to both the Institute’s and national affairs”.
In line with this, Mrs. Lasehinde disclosed that ICSAN, through its Company Secretary and Registrars forum, aims to “expose participants to issues on unclaimed dividends and way-out” through the forum scheduled for Thursday, 4th Match, 2021.
Government’s plan in this regard is a great discouragement to the investing public and the companies. It provides no impetus whatsoever for anyone to invest. Locking up those funds in this way creates an almost impossible situation for anyone to get his/her funds, noted Mrs. Lasehinde.
According to her, the forum which is designed as an interactive programme, will be facilitated by seasoned technocrats, experienced and skilled Professionals as it promises to be “a value-adding programme”, she added.
In a related development, the Training Department of Institute offers training of various sorts for capacity building and development of professionals in governance fields. These also include normal trainings as well as in-house training that are tailor-made for the organisations that request them.
“ICSAN’s open courses are specifically designed for company secretaries and directors, compliance managers, risk managers, and governance advisors among others, with a rich curriculum covering the wide spectrum of roles, responsibilities, and leadership skills that are essential in today are evolving business landscape”.
The Committee, as the coordinator of the institute’s training and human capital development for the sector, is also reinvigorating the ICSAN 5 years old Graduate Internship Scheme.
The Institute Graduate Internship Scheme as a platform gives fresh graduates of the Institute the opportunity to acquire hands-on experience in Corporate Governance, Company Secretarial Practice, Compliance, Share Registration and Company Secretarial Practice, etc in reputable organizations in Nigeria.
“It exposes the interns to the practical aspects of the profession and has continued to gain more popularity and participation by partner companies also known as ‘Engaging Entities’”.
Expatiating on the GIS, Chairman, Publicity & Advocacy Committee, Mrs. Lynda Onefeli, explained that the scheme is for a period of three (3) months in the first instance but may be extended at the instance of the Engaging Entity after communicating such intention to ICSAN.
Being a corporate governance watchdog institution, the Advocacy Committee chairman noted that while the Scheme is optional, once an Intern is posted to an Engaging Entity and has reported for duty, he or she is expected to complete the programme.
“Several top companies and organizations including manufacturing companies, banks, insurance companies, and corporate secretarial firms have continued to partner with the Institute. For the sustainability of this scheme, all members’ organizations are enjoined to partner with the Institute on the scheme”
The ICSAN officials confirmed that the mechanism has been put in place to prevent the likelihood of any participating graduate to be unduly exploited. “These are corporate governance compliant companies, while they are most unlikely to act at variance with global best practice, we have thoroughly discussed and trashed likely gray areas to prevent untoward developments.
Just the like issue of unclaimed dividends, other programmes lined up in the course of the year according to Mrs. Onefeli include: Lagos State Corporate Governance Practitioners Day; Roundtable on Corporate Governance; Investiture of New Leadership; the Institute will also organize a training /Workshop in collaboration with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.