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Insurance commission urges firms to publicise claims payment capacities

Insurance companies have over a long time develop the culture of protecting the interest of their clients to them extent that companies do not usually disclose claims payments made to individual clients.

This is more pronounced in the area of life insurance policies where beneficiaries are shielded to avoid pressure from family members and sundry interest groups.

But it seems however that this culture of conservatism is no longer working well for the insurance companies considering the cynicism among the public on whether insurance companies pay claims or not.

It was consequent upon the need to foster better trust among insurance companies and their prospective clients that the nation’s commissioner for Insurance Mr. Sunday Thomas is now urging underwriters to device more effective ways of showcasing their claims payment capacities as an option for deepening trust.

Commissioner for Insurance said this in a paper with theme;  Strategies Aimed at Cushioning the Effects of the COVID -19 on the Operations of the Nigerian Insurance Industry and the Way Forward which he presented at the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) 2022 Business Outlook Seminar which held  in Lagos.

According to him, it was unkind for insurance companies in Nigeria not to have made much ‘noise’  over the payment of N11 billion claims on insured losses associated with the EndSARS protest.

He consequently urged insurance  operators to learn how to blow their trumpets, adding that if they failed to blow their trumpet it would rust.

Thomas noted that the era of keeping quiet over claims payment is gone, stressing that operators should match the public with regular dissemination of information so as to stem the falsehood been perpetuated about the industry.

He said the industry operators are not spending much on awareness campaign, adding that the public has little knowledge on insurance.

Thomas said he was shocked to hear from an operator who said insurance brokers are not permitted to advertise their operations. He said such erroneous belief should be discarded, adding that there is not regulation barring insurers and brokers or any insurance practitioner from advertising.

President of Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria Sir Muftau Oyegunle  said the programme among other things, examines the National Budget, reviews the thrusts of the fiscal and monetary policies of the government and estimate how these would influence the insurance industry in particular and the economy in general.

He maintained that the theme of 2022 Business Outlook was: “Economic Policies of the Government in 2022: Challenges, Issues and Prospects”. In examining the Government’s 2022 economic policies, we will look to: Analyse the 2022 National Budget as presented; review the fiscal and monetary policy of the Government and their impact on the Insurance sub- sector of the economy; ppraise the performance of the Insurance Industry in 2021 and project into the future and review the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic to the Insurance industry and how the industry can reposition itself – going forward, he said.

Managing Director and CEO Excel Professional Service Limited, Dr. Oladimeji Alo, speaking on the topic, ‘Economic Policies of the Government in 2022, Issues, Challenges and Prospects’ implored insurance operators to put more efforts on celebrating their achievements in claims settlement, adding that it would help promote the belief that they really pay claims.

He also called for evolvement of good products, increase in human capacity and capital.

Group Chief Executive Officer, United Capital Plc, Peter Ashade, , speaking on the topic, ‘Insurance Perspective of the Theme Paper’, implored operators to focus on oil sector stressing that the Petroleum Industry Act would create more opportunities for the insurance industry to harness.

He also implored them to increase their capacity on agric insurance as there are huge opportunities in the agriculture sector.

He called for proper management of data. “Note that the quality of your decision making is driven by the quality of your data,” he posited.

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