Home ECONOMY Firms give up Sh2bn in unclaimed assets

Firms give up Sh2bn in unclaimed assets

by biasharadigest
Market News

Firms give up Sh2bn in unclaimed assets

John Mwangi
Unclaimed Financial Assets Authority Chief Executive John Mwangi briefs the media on October 8. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Unclaimed money has risen 23.07 percent after companies and public entities surrendered another Sh2 billion bringing the total amount to Sh15 billion.

The disclosure follows the end of the 2019 reporting period last October 31, when companies and public entities were expected to report and surrender uncollected monies to the Unclaimed Financial Assets Authority (Ufaa).

In a notice posted on its Twitter handle, the Ufaa said during the period under review stockbrokers surrendered 12 million units of an unknown value bringing the total number of shares held by the agency to 567 million whose value has in the past been placed at about Sh25 billion.

The notice said: “Sh400 million has since been paid out to claimants with another 7,000 Kenyans lodging fresh claims. Our number one job is to make sure you are reunited with your long lost cash.”

An earlier study by the Ufaa said 477,112 institutions were holding Sh241 billion ‘lost’ funds that belonged to Kenyans who had retired or died unaware of the existence of such wealth.

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The disclosure comes as the Ufaa and a multi-agency team led by Interior Secretary Fred Matiang’i continues a countrywide door-to-door search of beneficiaries expected to lodge claims for the funds.

Dr Matiang’i directed chiefs to use data provided by the Ufaa to trace the owners or their family members to help improve livelihoods of Kenyans who might be suffering while family wealth lies idle in government treasure troves.

Funds expected to be surrendered include monies held in dormant banks, saccos, shares, dividends, mature insurance policies, money orders, court refunds, assets held in a fiduciary capacity, unpaid wages, safe-deposit boxes and cheques as well as royalties and money in dormant mobile money accounts.

The agency warned non-compliant company chief executives and owners that they risk Sh1 million fine or being sent to jail for a year while companies failing to remit risk paying a penalty of up to 25 percent value of the unsurrendered funds.

“Anyone who willfully fails to render the information of performing other duties as required by the Ufaa Act shall be liable to pay a Sh7,000 but not more than Sh50,000 for each day the report is withheld or the duty is not performed,” it adds.

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