Obligation to lay group accounts before holding company

Section 150 of the companies Act Cap 486 states that:

(1) Where at the end of its financial year a company has subsidiaries, accounts or statements (in this Act referred to as group accounts) dealing as hereinafter mentioned with the state of affairs and profit or loss of the company and the subsidiaries shall, subject to subsection (2), be laid before the company in general meeting when the company’s own balance sheet and profit and loss account are so laid.
(2) Notwithstanding anything in subsection (1)–

  •  group accounts shall not be required where the company is at the end of its financial year the wholly owned subsidiary of another body corporate incorporated in Kenya; and
  • group accounts need not deal with a subsidiary of the company if the company’s directors are of opinion that–
  • it is impracticable, or would be of no real value to members of the company, in view of the insignificant amounts involved, or would involve expense or delay out of proportion to the value to members of the company; or
  • the result would be misleading, or harmful to the business of the company or any of its subsidiaries; or
  •  the business of the holding company and that of the subsidiary are so different that they cannot reasonably be treated as a single undertaking; and
    if the directors are of such an opinion about each of the company’s subsidiaries, group accounts shall not be required:

Provided that the approval of the registrar shall be required for not dealing in group accounts with a subsidiary on the ground that the result would be harmful or on the ground of the difference between the business of the holding company and that of the subsidiary.
(3) If any person being a director of a company fails to take all reasonable steps to secure compliance as respects the company with the provisions of this section, he shall, in respect of each offence, be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months or to a fine not exceeding ten thousand shillings or to both: Provided that–

  • in any proceedings against a person in respect of an offence under this section, it shall be a defence to prove that he had reasonable ground to believe and did believe that a competent and reliable person was charged with the duty of seeing that the requirements of this section were complied with and was in a position to discharge that duty; and
  • a person shall not be sentenced to imprisonment for an offence under this section unless, in the opinion of the court, the offence was committed wilfully.

(4) For the purposes of this section a body corporate shall be deemed to be the wholly owned subsidiary of another if it has no members except that other and that other’s wholly owned subsidiaries and its or their nominees.

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