NAICOM Clarifies Acquisition Of New Building Follows Due Process, Refutes Allegation
By Sola Alabadan
The management of the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) has denied allegation that the government agency deceived President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Executive Council into approving the purchase of a new office building in Abuja, clarifying that due process was followed before acquiring the new property.
Reacting to the report published by a national daily recently, the Commission affirmed that it actually, through the Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, presented to the Federal Executive Council presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari, an unfinished property for approval to be acquired as NAICOM Academy and office accommodation,following the approval by the immediate past Governing Board of the Commission.
NAICOM stressed that “All documents relating to the property clearly state that the property was in an unfinished state.”
Before the FEC approval, the Commission stated that it obtained a “No Objection” from the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), following the valuation of the property by the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing.
Besides, NAICOM said” Adequate due diligence was conducted on the property for acquisition and all relevant approvals were secured by the Commission.”
NAICOM added that” Provision was made in the 2022 approved annual budget of the Commission for the purpose of acquiring the building for the Commission.”
The commission emphasised that” The building is to serve the dual purpose of housing the newly established NAICOM Academy, which is an initiative of the present leadership of the Commission to address knowledge gap in the insurance sector regulation and supervision, not only in Nigeria, but across Africa and beyond and also serve as the new head office of the Commission”.
In order to address the problem of low insurance penetration, entrench the culture of insurance in every part of the country and enhance the effectiveness of its surveillance in all the geopolitical zones of the country, NAICOM pointed out that the expansion of the Commission’s infrastructural facilities is inevitable thus the Commission requires a befitting Office accommodation to curtail any future office space crises.
NAICOM further noted that “This clarification has become necessary to clear any doubt in the minds of the public with respect to the process followed by the Commission in its efforts at acquiring the property.”
The newspaper had alleged that the Commission deceived President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Executive Council into approving the purchase of a new office building in Abuja.
It was also stated in the publication that the Commission said it was buying a “ready to use magnificent office complex” rather than an uncompleted building.
GNI Denies Selling Annuity Business To Another Insurer
By Sola Alabadan
The Board and Management of Great Nigeria Insurance Plc has denied the rumour making the rounds that the insurance outfit has sold its annuity business portfolio to another insurance company.
Reacting to the publication by a media outfit that the Annuity businesses of GNI Plc and Tangerine Africa have been acquired by a particular Insurance Company, GNI said the information contained in the publication is far from the truth
The company said “This development is a crude attempt by an unscrupulous competitor to demarket our brand and shrink our share of the Annuity Insurance market.
“In the last five (5) years, our Annuity Insurance portfolio has grown steadily by over 14,845% and our Annuitants have been enjoying value added services.
In view of the foregoing there is no basis for transferring our Annuity business to another company in the industry. We want to state emphatically that GNI Plc has not and does not intend to sell-off its Annuity business Portfolio, neither does it intend to partner with any Insurance company or companies in the Annuity insurance market.
“This release therefore serves as a categorical disclaimer that our Company is not in any kind of partnership or merger discussion with any Insurance company regarding our Annuity Insurance Portfolio.”
GNI therefore informed insurance intermediaries and the company’s clients to disregard any information regarding the transfer or acquisition of GNI’s Annuity Insurance Portfolio.
The organisation added that it is poised to continue in its well known tradition of delivering qualitative insurance services to its esteemed customers.
Leadway Moves To Bolster Reading Culture Among Children
By Sola Alabadan
Leadway Group has launched an extra-curricular initiative campaign tagged “Pages to Places” in 12 public schools across six states in Nigeria, namely, Lagos, Ogun, Abuja, Kaduna, Enugu, and Port Harcourt. This is in line with the organisation’s commitment to promote literacy, bolster reading culture, and improve quality education among children aged 6-12.
The “Pages to Places” initiative, targeted at children, is a book reading initiative to steer the young generation towards expanding the reading culture, broadening their healthy imaginative abilities, believing in a better world and becoming better, more creative, and more promising individuals.
The “Pages to Places” initiative, which is under the group’s education-focused corporate social responsibility drive, Leadway Goes to School, has been designed to commemorate the 2023 Children’s Day celebration and is scheduled to run from Tuesday, May 30 to Wednesday, June 7, 2023.
Speaking on the initiative, the Group Chief Marketing Officer of Leadway Holdings, Mr. Olusakin Labeodan, cited that according to the World Culture Score Index, Nigeria has one of the world’s lowest reading cultures. At the same time, available statistics from the National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education show that 38 percent of Nigerians are illiterate, with four out of every ten primary school children being illiterate.
“We believe in the transformative power of a book, its potential to improve the intellectual capacity of our young ones, and its capacity to shape the future into a promising horizon no matter one’s social-economic background.
“With a little over 40% of Nigerians comprising young people under the age of 14, it has become imperative for organisations like ours to intervene and help build this generation into a pipeline of global talents and leaders. This is the philosophy that drives our organisation. We are thrilled to be launching this initiative with hundreds of children who desperately need to improve their skills”, he stated.
College Of Insurance Supervisors Honours NAICOM Boss, Director
By Sola Alabadan
In appreciation of his contributions to the success of the institution, the College of Insurance Supervisors of West African Monetary Zone (CISWAMZ) has given awards to the Commissioner for Insurance and Chief Executive Officer of the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), Olorundare Thomas.
The award was presented to the NAICOM boss at the ongoing 5th meeting of the College in Abuja on Tuesday.
The award is in recognition of Thomas’s pioneering role in the establishment and eventual take-off of the college as Chairman of the West Africa Insurance Supervisors Association (WAISA).
Similarly, Mr. Pius Agboola, the Director Inspectorate at NAICOM, who served as the pioneer Chairman of the College, was also honoured with an award at the meeting.
The CISWAMZ was established with the purpose of providing a common platform for regulators from the WAMZ countries to come together to discuss how to oversee individual and cross border financial institutions in the Zone.
By coming together in a structured way, supervisors are able to learn from each other and develop best practice on supervision across national boundaries. The Charter establishing the College was ratified by the Committee of Governors of the WAMZ on 31 July, 2010. On 7 February 2019, the CSWAMZ Charter was revised to reflect the dynamic developments in the banking sectors of the WAMZ.
The main objectives of the CSWAMZ include: to facilitate the exchange of information, views and assessments among supervisors in order to allow for a more efficient and effective consolidated and solo supervision and timely action.
It is also aimed at enabling supervisors to develop a common understanding of the risk profile of the group as the starting point for risk based supervision at both group and solo levels; as well as to achieve coordination of supervisory review and risk assessment, establishing supervisory plans, arranging any division of tasks and joint onsite visits, thus avoiding duplication of work and reducing the regulatory burden.
Besides, CISWAMZ coordinates decisions taken by individual authorities; contribute to a consistent implementation of WAMZ directives and to the convergence of Member States supervisory practices across the WAMZ; while facilitating the implementation/operationalisation of the memorandum of understanding between and among various supervisory authorities within the WAMZ.
Additionally, the college seeks to reduce regulatory duplication and inconsistency improve subsequent bilateral dialogue between regulators, increase levels of trust and enhance the cooperation of supervisors.