Nigeria to host 2023 WAICA education confab; NIA expresses optimism over CIIB 2020

By Henry Uche, Lagos

The Nigerian Insurance market will host the 43rd Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Education Conference of the West African Insurance Companies Association (WAICA), a three-day event slated for May 7 to 9.

Briefing members of the Nigerian Association of Insurance & Pension Editors (NAIPE) in Lagos recently, the Chairman of Nigerian Insurers Association (NIA), Mr Olosegun Omoshein who disclosed this said, over 140 delegates from five Anglophone countries in West Africa are expected to attend this year’s conference.

“The Nigerian insurance market will host the next WAICA Educational Conference in May and as usual with conferences of this nature, we expect participants from other West African Countries,”

According to him, it is expected that the conference would avail members the opportunity to share ideas, network and brainstorm over recent issues in the sub-region and proffer the best way to promote the insurance business as the level of risks and hazards in the global business environment is becoming horrid.

“It is a platform for sharing business information and ideas, knowledge sharing and networking among members to get the best ways to foster and deliver the insurance values to our people,” he maintained.

In the same vein, the NIA chairman expressed optimism that the Consolidated Insurance Industry Bill (CIIB) 2020 currently receiving legislative attention will see the light of the day (Presidential Assent) by the ninth national assembly before leaving.

Note that the process for reviewing the Insurance Act 2003 has been ongoing since the year 2020 when the Consolidated Insurance Industry Bill was proposed. The Bill according to him has gone through the two Legislative Houses, adding that “it is currently going through the remaining legislative procedures preparatory to the Presidential Assent.”

Omosehin who is also the Managing Director/CEO, of Old Mutual Nigeria, since the year 2020 when the Bill was proposed, affirmed that “We have been following through with all the processes and I am indeed delighted to inform you the Bill has been passed and would be signed by this National Assembly,”

“The Bill has gone through the two legislative houses, and we are just waiting for a few legislative procedures to be done preparatory to presidential assent, that we are hopeful the ninth assembly will actually achieve before leaving the stage,”

“So we are hopeful this will receive speedy attention so that the industry can begin to benefit from some of the provisions and tap into the opportunities as provided by the new laws because some of our laws have been amended,” the NIA Chairman added.

In line with the theme of his administration as NIA boss, “Expanding the frontiers of Insurance through Partnerships and Stakeholders’ Engagement,” he affirmed that he had extended a hand of fellowship, relationship and collaboration to other arms of the insurance industry.

He noted thus, “In furtherance of the above, the Governing Council has scaled up engagement with other arms of the industry to discuss issues of mutual concern. The Joint NIA/ NCRIB Technical Committee has been meeting on technical issues that affect brokers and underwriters and it is our hope and expectation that these engagements will further cement the already existing cordial relationship between the two bodies,”

Looking at the recent upward review of third-party motor insurance, he averred that the Association was in full support of the new premium rates released by NAICOM and has indeed taken steps to ensure its members comply and join in the publicity initiatives that would follow shortly.

This he said would not only lead to an increase in premium income for underwriters but also an increase in claims payment to the clients. “It is important at this juncture to point out that ECOWAS Risk (risk arising from travellers from West African countries) other is covered under the new premium rates,”

Regarding the Tenure limit for Chief Executive Officers and Directors of Financial Institutions as prescribed by NAICOM, he asserted that the umbrella body of insurance companies did not take any position in support or against the directive of NAICOM, but would follow what the extant laws provide.

“Just before the end of 2022, we also received a circular from NAICOM prescribing tenure limit for Chief Executive Officers of insurance and reinsurance institutions, let me assure you that the Council is engaging the National Insurance Commission on areas of concern,” he asseverated.

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