By Sola Alabadan
The Chairman of Heirs Holdings, Tony Elumelu, has charged the Nigerian Council Of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB) to lead the war against unethical practices, such as: premium rate cutting, delayed premium remittance, unremitted premium, overloading of premium, returned premium, fake documents, that have been the bane of the nation’s insurance industry for years.
Elumelu, who gave this charge during the 60th Anniversary celebration of NCRIB in Lagos on Thursday, listed other unethical practices to include:
fraudulent claims, collusion to defraud, mis-selling, unhealthy competition, misrepresentations, manipulation of policy conditions, self-enrichment methods disguised as marketing expenses, among others.
While the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) continues to play its role as the industry regulator, he said the NCRIB, as a body, must ensure that appropriate sanctions are imposed on any of its members found engaging in unethical practices.
He also advocated for the recapitalisation of the brokerage industry in our country, saying the minimum capital base should be increased to N50 million, noting that N5 million is not enough as capital base.
In the area of Governance, he said the industry need to enforce strict adherence to corporate governance by all NCRIB members, while weeding out non-registered and non-compliant members from its fold.
He said the non-registered brokers are the ones tarnishing the image of the broking profession and the industry at large.
Elumelu called on the insurance operators to create more awareness about insurance and showcase the value of insurance to the public, promoting participation, most especially in the retail space.
Insurance brokers, he added, need to participate fully in this drive to bridge the insurance knowledge gap if the industry is desirous to make insurance attractive to Nigerians.
As the insurance brokers have been recognised as corporate insurance specialists, he stated that “It is high time the brokers community began to shift focus to retail because this is where the future of insurance lies in Nigeria. Brokers have the capacity to lead in this area.”
While pointing out that innovation and disruptive practices cannot occur if the operators do not broaden their thinking, he said “Trying to make profits from existing lines is not going to deepen insurance penetration, rather we must look at the blue ocean opportunities.
“This is something I task the management of the insurance companies to constantly think of in product development and deployment.”
To remain relevant in the modern business arena, the insurance broker community and, by extension, the entire Nigerian insurance industry, must embrace technology fully, he further advised.
Besides, he said there is urgent need to develop the next generation of talent to serve the Nigerian insurance industry.
He emphasised that the broker community should rally and become the hub for the education and training of our youths to get qualified talent for the next phase of the industry, adding that “We need to raise the profile of our insurance professionals, make it attractive for the younger generation.”
African Alliance Assures On Prompt Claims Payment, To Delight Shareholders
By Sola Alabadan
The management of African Alliance Insurance Plc has assured that the company will continue to pay all genuine claims promptly, even as strategies have been put in place to delight all its stakeholders.
The foremost life insurer is a stalwart with over 63 years of expertise in the life assurance sector, emerged the winner of the 2022 “Claims insurance Company of the Year” award.
Giving this assurance in Lagos, the company’s Managing Director, Joyce Ojemudia stated that, “African Alliance remains committed to swiftly and professionally settling all valid claims, ensuring enduring happiness and satisfaction for our valued customers.”
From 2019 to 2023, African Alliance exemplified this commitment by disbursing an impressive sum of over N40 billion during this period.
A breakdown of this N40 billion claims showed that Group life accounted for N5.1 billion, Individual life accounted for N7.5 billion, Esusu accounted for N3.4 billion, Takaful accounted for N2.8 billion and Annuity accounted for N21.4 billion.
Interestingly, African Alliance has sustained this moment in the current year 2024 as the company proactively disbursed over N1.1 billion in claims within the initial 58 days of the year.
Mrs. Ojemudia reiterated her pledge to stakeholders, underscoring ongoing strategic initiatives aimed at propelling African Alliance to the forefront of the life assurance business in Nigeria.
These initiatives aim to secure a larger market share, while upholding the utmost standards of integrity and placing customer satisfaction at the forefront.
African Alliance continues to be a beacon of reliability and dedication in the life assurance landscape, promising not just financial security but a journey filled with contentment and assurance for all stakeholders.
Youth Development Ministry, NAICOM Move To Promote Financial Literacy, Entrepreneurship
By Sola Alabadan
The Federal Ministry of Youth Development and National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) have commenced moves to advance youth development initiatives, particularly in the areas of financial literacy, entrepreneurship, and career development.
The Minister of State, Federal Ministry of Youth Development Mr. Ayodele Olawande actually paid a courtesy visit to the Commissioner for Insurance, Mr. Olorundare Thomas in Abuja on Friday, to discuss the potential collaboration opportunities in this regard.
In his remarks, the Commissioner for Insurance welcomed the Minister and gave a brief history and overview of the Nigerian insurance industry, as well as the administrative structure of the Commission
Thomas highlighted the achievements of the commission in the area of financial inclusion, transition to risk-based supervision and IFRS 17, setting up of the West African Insurance Supervisors Association and the College of Insurance Supervisors of the West African Monetary Zone.
The Minister thanked the NAICOM Management for the warm reception and expressed his desires for the Ministry to collaborate with NAICOM in engaging the Nigerian youth formally and informally to develop their skills.
He noted that the Ministry had developed a digital platform (app) called Nigerian Youth Academy (NIYA) where Nigerian youths could learn vocational and digital skills.
He requested to collaborate with NAICOM in the building of insurance educational module to be uploaded on the NIYA platform as this will go a long way in training the youths and improve their level of financial literacy, help in entrepreneurship and job creation, career development and sensitise youth on the benefits of insurance.
The NAICOM boss promised to convey the Minister’s request to relevant parties within the Nigerian insurance industry and these include the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria and the College of Insurance and Financial Management.
Sovereign Trust Insurance Celebrates Valentine’s Day With Highway Managers
By Sola Alabadan
Staff members of Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc took to the streets, today being the Valentines Day, to spread love to workers of the Lagos Waste Management Authority, LAWMA, popularly known as Highway Managers.
As part of activities to mark the day, the insurance company distributed items such as work gloves, water bottles and takeaway packs in celebrating the day with members of LAWMA along the axis of Falomo Bridge, Bourdillon Road, Lekki Phase 1, Eti-Osa, Osborne Road, Ozumba Mbadiwe Road, and Adetokunbo Ademola Street in the metropolis.
According to the Chief Spokesperson of the organisation, Segun Bankole, he said the gesture is in recognition of the important role the Highway Managers play in ensuring that the city of Lagos and our highways are kept clean while making it motorable for vehicle owners and other commuters in the State.
He said the underwriting firm appreciates and recognises the essence of dignity in labour, stressing that “as unsung as they may seem, we are not oblivious of the phenomenal work they are doing in making the city debris-free especially on our highways”.
Similarly, the Managing Director/CEO of Sovereign Trust, Olaotan Soyinka stated that “this initiative is not just about gifts, it is about recognising the essential role these men and women play in our community. They are often unsung heroes, working long hours in challenging conditions to ensure a clean and healthy environment for all of us. By showing our appreciation, we hope to not only brighten their day but also inspire others to acknowledge their valuable contributions.”
He further stated that the Highway Managers risk their lives and brave the elements, ensuring the cleanliness and hygiene in the city of Lagos. He said the token gifts from the company is simply to acknowledge their hard work and commitment to keeping the city of Lagos clean despite the challenges they confront in the discharge of their duties.
Soyinka further encouraged other businesses and individuals to join the organisation in celebrating and supporting these men and women from time to time, adding that “Together, we can make a difference in the lives of these remarkable individuals who do so much for our city and society and at large.”