Lagos, Nov.11, 2023: The National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) on Friday warned insurance operators against dealing with unlicensed brokers and agents to facilitate insurance businesses.
Mrs Ebelechukwu Nwachukwu, Chairman, Publicity Sub-Committee of the Insurers Committee said this at a news briefing on the outcome of the committee’s meeting in Lagos.
Nwachukwu, also Managing Director of Royal Exchange General Insurance, stated that NAICOM took cognisance of this exception during the ongoing Risk Based Supervision(RBS) to some insurance companies.
She said :” the regulator spoke to us very strongly, to ensure that all the agents and brokers we are using are licensed up-to-date or renewed, as against doing business with brokers with expired licenses or unregistered agents.
According to her, NAICOM also recommended a lot of self regulation to the underwriters as regards to the RBS.
The sub-committee chairman disclosed that NAICOM directed that the boards of the various underwriting firms should put in place and approve the whistle blowing policies in their respective companies.
Nwachukwu expressed that the committee agreed on the need for the insurance industry to increase awareness on Annuity and continue to build trust to ensure that the product line grows significantly.
“With the amount of fund in the pension industry, we should expect a lot of that to be downloaded into the insurance industry through annuity,” she said.
The sub-committee chairman revealed that NAICOM also frowned at the backlog of unpaid claims and charged the affected insurers to settle all outstanding claims as soon as possible.
She said that the committee have decided that the unpaid claims should be publicised on the platform of the Nigeria Insurers Association(NIA) for first three months to encourage those who lodged claims to come for it.
“After the three months and we see that the impact is still outstanding, companies may be mandated to do a personal publicity.
“A lot of unpaid claims have been reported, but supporting documents were not provided, and as such they remain as outstanding claims for so many years,” she said.
According to her, the insurance operators further discussed the need for NAICOM to continue to engage the National Assembly to ensure that the Consolidated Insurance Bill is passed.
Nwachukwu noted that the insurers have also began the process of harmonising the Ecowas Brown Card to ensure that the same certificate is issued across all countries using the brown card.
She said the insurers also took a presentation from KPMG, as part of its planning for the insurance industry’s 10 years Transformation Roadmap.
According to the managing director, eight pillars were proposed to the insurance industry as part of the roadmap, which includes: to continuously improve the regulatory environment.
Nwachukwu said as part of the proposal, Risk Based pricing and Risk Based capital would become paramount.
She stated that increased awareness and improvement in market conduct and ethics was proposed as part of the transformational roadmaps to the future that the industry desires.
The sub-committee chairman said that the presentation also suggests more partnership with non-insurers players, just as their counterparts in the banking industry were doing.
She stated that the insurers were charged on digitalisation and improvement of talents pool of the insurance sector and playing a role or supporting national economic growth plan.