The Commissioner for Insurance, Sunday Thomas, said the National Insurance Commission will soon be issuing fresh directives to insurance companies to cover risks arising from strikes, riot and civil commotion.
Thomas, who stated this at this year’s
Professionals Forum organised by the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria in Abeokuta, Ogun State, lamented the recent nationwide protests in Nigeria.
The agitation by EndSARS protesters was hijacked by hoodlums who took advantage of the protest to unleash mayhem on several cities.
The NAICOM boss said the recent outbreak of protests and civil unrest across the country and the resultant losses had exposed the vulnerability of government, businesses and individuals to unforeseen events.
These incidents, according to him have further reinforced the value and necessity of the insurance industry.
He said risks arising from strikes, riot and civil commotion which were redundant in the past and which by competition are mostly offered free of charge must now be adequately rated as an important product for the survival of Nigerian businesses.
However, he lamented that “these incidents are likely to increase insurance claims, thereby exacerbating the already weakened liquidity and capability of insurance companies.”
The NAICOM boss said the incidents have further reinforced the need for proper underwriting to ensure insurers are able to settle corresponding claims obligations to cushion the effect of losses on Nigerian households and businesses.
He said, “It is pertinent to note that insurance coverage for Strike, Riot and Civil Commotion clauses, which were redundant in the past and which by competition are mostly offered free of charge must now be adequately rated as an important product for the survival of Nigerian businesses.
“The Commission will be issuing directives to ensure that underwriting is strengthened to appropriately rate and charge requisite premiums so that profitability can be guaranteed and claims are settled promptly without financial strain on the companies.
He noted that while most losses arising from the Coronavirus pandemic are not adequately covered by existing insurance policies, it had become obvious that current insurance product offerings are not adequate to respond to emergent risks and needs of the society.
Thomas said there is, therefore, the need for a review of conventional insurance products in order to upscale the value proposition of the Nigerian insurance industry.
“We cannot continue to ignore the impact of unforeseen events on individuals, businesses, and the insurance industry as a whole.
Thomas also said insurance should act as the platform to relaunch economic growth.
He said, “As Nigeria reals in the pain of the destruction and losses suffered this year, the Nigeria insurance industry must utilise the opportunity to lead in the quick recovery and restoration of the affected businesses and also showcase its role in reinforcing the economic resilience of individuals, businesses and the economy at large.”
He also linked the increased propensity for claims to the suddenness of the Covid-19 pandemic which imposed immense pressure on all businesses including insurance business.
He said claims could come from pressures faced by consumers in the form of reduced finance and business activities, lack of access to credit, expiration and wastage of perishable goods, temporary or permanent business closures and employee contract terminations, life threatening and death.
The Commissioner said the pandemic had curtailed the ability of the industry to sell insurance products which in turn reduced premium income because of the traditional in-person sales and marketing.
This, according to him, had necessitated the need for a robust online automated marketing and feedback system.
Brokers Charge FG To Declare State Of Emergency On Insecurity
The Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB), has lamented the spate of killings, kidnapping and other forms of violent attacks in the country, saying the development is not only tarnishing the country’s image but also scaring investors away from the country.
The President of the Council, Dr. Bola Onigbogi who said this at media parley in Lagos, appealled to the federal government to, as a matter of urgency, declare a state of emergency on terrorism and killings, especially in the Northern part of Nigeria.
Onigbogi noted that if nothing is done as soon as possible to address this menace, it will deter foreign investors from investing in the Nigerian economy.
She said: “to say that the rate of killings and kidnapping in Nigeria is endemic is to state the obvious. The recent rate of attacks on people in most part of the nation is so disheartening.
“It is worrisome seeing how Nigerians are being massacred in their own fatherland unabated. It is difficult to read the mindset of these dare devil hoodlums, who have decided to unleash terror on unsuspecting and innocent Nigerians.
“Our heartfelt sympathy goes to the government and the people of affected States, especially, the immediate families of the victims. However, I like to join several other Nigerians to appeal to the Federal Government, as a matter of urgency, declare a state of emergency on terrorism and killings, especially in the Northern part of Nigeria.
“We appeal to Mr. President to instruct all the service chiefs to take responsibilities for the killings and kidnappings that has continued to tarnish the image of the country. It is important to note that with the spate of killings and kidnapping in Nigeria, if nothing is done as soon as possible, it will deter investors from investing in Nigeria economy”.
Onigbogi, who also spoke on building collapses in the country, called on the government to take decisive measures to address this issues.
“It is essential for government to facilitate meetings of all stakeholders in order to reach a compromise on methods to adopt in stemming the tide. Kindly permit me to state at this juncture that the enforcement of Section 64 and Section 65 of Insurance Act 2003 should be prioritized”, she expressed.
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NICON Insurance Denies Receiving Senate’s Summon Over Non-remittance Of Pension Fund
The management of NICON Insurance Limited has denied receiving any summon from the Senate Committee on Public Accounts due to failure to remit pension fund to the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate.
In a statement titled, ‘NICON Insurance faults report on senate summon’, the insurance firm recalled the report, which stated that the Nigerian Senate had summoned the firm over ‘Failure to remit N17.4billion pension fund to PTAD’.
The insurance firm stated that it had not received any summon from the Senate Committee on Public Accounts and was, therefore, unaware of the existence of such summons as reported by the media.
The statement reads in part, “It is of great concern to management that NICON has been subjected to the court of public opinion on a matter in which we have discharged our duty as a responsible corporate citizen.
“To set the records straight, NICON transferred assets to PTAD under the leadership of Sharon Ikeazor in lieu of the legacy pension funds for over 50 agencies and parastatals of the Federal Government in June 2017.
“PTAD has all the title documents of the properties in its possession and has been collecting rent on them in the last four years. NICON is therefore not liable to PTAD for any pension funds.
“Management also notes that other issues reportedly raised by the Executive Secretary of PTAD, Dr Chioma Ejikeme, are before a court and are therefore sub-judice for discussion except before the court of law.”
The insurance firm said it would not join issues with anyone and would make no further comment on these issues till they were resolved by the court.