Friday, 28 February 2014

Business Journal insurance summit holds March 10

Chuks Udo Okonta

The Business Journal has said its first Insurance Summit and Exhibition 2014 will hold on Monday, March 10, 2014 at Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja Lagos.

A statement by the Publisher/Editor-in-Chief, Prince Cookey, said the theme is: ‘Closing Insurance Awareness Gap for Business Growth.’

He stated that the summit is to provide a platform for stakeholders in the insurance industry to brainstorm on key issues driving the immediate and future growth of the market.

“It is also our desire to keep insurance on the front-burner of national discourse to create better awareness and understanding of the industry and ensure sustainable growth.

“As the theme suggests, we strongly believe that closing the yawning insurance awareness gap in Nigeria will lead to dramatic increase in the fortunes of the industry for the overall benefit of all stakeholders-regulator, operators and consumers,” Cookey said.

The Business Journal publisher urged current stakeholders in the industry to seize opportunity of the summit to honestly address the challenges retarding rapid growth of the market to re-write the history of the insurance sector in Nigeria.

He described the summit as the little contribution of Business Journal magazine to the development of the insurance industry in Nigeria. He promised that the summit would be an annual event to constantly evaluate the progress of the industry, identify weak spots and generate ideas to address them and move the market forward.

Cookey said Commissioner for Insurance and the helmsman of the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) Fola Daniel would be the Special Guest of Honour at the event to be chaired by Fatai, Lawal, President/Chairman of Council, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN).

The Distinguished Guest Speakers include Dr. Akin Ogunbiyi, Group Managing Director/CEO, Mutual Benefits Assurance Plc;  Gbolahan Olutayo, Managing Director, Goldlink Insurance Plc, Abdul Koledoye, President/Chairman of Council, National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria;  Yemi Soladoye of the Insurance Consumers Association of Nigeria, Ademayowa Adeduro, Managing Director, Anchor Insurance Company Limited and Iboro Otongaran, Managing Director, Prodata Limited.

 He paid tribute to NAICOM, Mutual Benefits Assurance Plc, Goldlink Insurance Plc, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) and the Nigerian Insurers Association (NIA) for supporting the summit.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

From left: General Secretary Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Adebayo Adeleke, Managing Director Plum Insurance Brokers Limied, Mrs Laide Osijo; National Co-ordinator Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Sir Sunny Nwosu; President Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB), Ayodapo Shoderu and Managing Director Riskguard Africa Nigeria Limited Yemi Soladoye at the Nigerian Insurance and Pension Award in Lagos.

From left: General Secretary Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Adebayo Adeleke, Managing Director Plum Insurance Brokers Limied, Mrs Laide Osijo; National Co-ordinator Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Sir Sunny Nwosu; President Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB), Ayodapo Shoderu and Managing Director Riskguard Africa Nigeria Limited Yemi Soladoye at the Nigerian Insurance and Pension Award in Lagos.

Picture from Inspen 2013 Nigerian Insurance and Pension Award

From left: Editor, Inspenonline, Chuks Udo Okonta;  Managing Director Riskguard Africa Nigeria Limited Yemi Soladoye;  Head, Corporate Communications and Brand Management Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc, Segun Bankole; Head, Risk and Compliance, Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers, Idu Okwuosa; National Co-ordinator Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), Sir Sunny Nwosu;  Managing Director Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc, Wale Onaolapo; President Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB), Ayodapo Shoderu and Director of Corporate Communications, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN), Joseph Obah at the Nigerian Insurance and Pension Award in Lagos.

Insurer Allianz hikes dividend on higher FY profit

Insurance company Allianz says it is increasing its dividend to 5.30 euros ($7.27) from 4.50 euros a share after profits rose 15 percent last year.

The Munich-based company said Thursday its net income attributable to shareholders reached 6 billion euros ($8.24 billion) in 2013, up from 5.2 billion euros the previous year.

Heavy storms in Europe last year didn't hurt earnings from its property and casualty business, while its life and health insurance also grew.

Revenue rose 4.1 percent to 110.8 billion euros.

Fourth quarter earnings increased 1 percent to 1.26 billion euros.

In early trading on the Frankfurt exchange Allianz shares remained unchanged on the previous day at 131.10 euros.

Source The Associated Press

New mobile policy? WeChat insurance app rolls out

Chinese insurance companies are looking to mobile social apps as a new means for business expansion.

Apart from teaming up with the country's largest online site Taobao Marketplace, some insurers are embracing mobile chat app WeChat as a way to capture customer attention.

Beijing-based Taikang Life Insurance Co Ltd has rolled out a beta-version health policy via WeChat, whose user base totaled 600 million by the end of 2013.

Via bank card transaction or WeChat's embedded payment function, customers can pay one yuan ($0.16) for insurance coverage worth 1,000 yuan should they be diagnosed with cancer.

Customers can even "ask for donations" by posting the policy on "Friend Circle", an integrated function enabling WeChat users to share insights and photos in a personal network.

Donating a one yuan premium can add up to 1,000 yuan in insurance coverage for people aged 18 to 39, and 300 yuan for those 40 to 49 years old.

The ceiling for coverage is capped at 100,000 yuan.

Marketers of the WeChat-only product are clamoring to engage the app's vast number of active users, Ding Junfeng, vice-general manager of Taikang Life's innovation business unit, told a media briefing on Tuesday.

"We aim to make people understand the mutual-assistance feature of insurance. The Internet is an influential force reshaping the industry and pushing us to stay ahead of the curve," Ding said.

Online insurance is hardly a novelty in China. Taobao has become a major avenue for insurers to tap a growing number of netizens who are usually more intrigued by innovative and personalized promotions than the old-fashioned hard sell.

For instance, Taobao and German insurer Allianz unveiled a "full-moon" insurance policy that pledged to compensate policyholders if they were unable to enjoy full-moon gazing during China's Mid-Autumn Festival.

Source The China Daily

Winners of Inspenonline 2013 Nigerian Insurance and Pension Award

From left: Managing Director Riskguard Africa Nigeria Limited Yemi Soladoye;  Head, Corporate Communications and Brand Management Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc, Segun Bankole; Head, Risk and Compliance, Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers, Idu Okwuosa;   Managing Director Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc, Wale Onaolapo; President Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB), Ayodapo Shoderu and Director of Corporate Communications, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN), Joseph Obah at the event in Lagos.

Insurance Man of the year:  Managing Director Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc, Mr Olawale Onaolapo

Insurance Company of the Year: Mansard Insurance Plc

Professional Excellence: Mr Yemi Soladoye

Best Professional Group: Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers and Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria.

Corporate Brand Award: Leadway Assurance Limited

Corporate Social Responsibility: Consolidated Hallmark Insurance Plc and Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc

Pension Fund Administrator of the year: Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers

Wednesday, 26 February 2014


As a result of expansion in our operation especially as we are planning to go to some other states of the federation, the following posts are available to be filled up by suitably qualified persons:

1) General Manager

- minimum qualification: HND/B.SC. in any social sciences, mass com. and insurance.

- minimum of two years post-qualification experience

2) Accountant

- minimum qualification OND with 5 years working experience

- Ability to use computer will be an added advantage.

3) Business Development Manager.
- Minimum qualification: HND/ B.SC in marketing, mass comm. business administration.

- Must be computer literate

4) Marketers

- Minimum qualifications: OND

- Driving experience will be an advantage but not compulsory.

5) Reporters
- Minimum qualifications: OND/HND/B.SC. in Mass Communications

- Ability to speak and write good English as well as any other Nigerian languages: Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa; Pidgin will be an added advantage.

6) Insurance and Pension Manager.

- B.Sc./HND

- Computer literate

- Minimum of 2 years working experience.

7) Personal Assistance
- HND/B.SC. in English Language or Mass Communication

8) Graphic Artist

9) Recording Studio Manager.
Please send your detailed CV to and specify the post you are applying for.

Address delivered by the Editor Inspenonline at the 2013 Nigerian Insurance and Pension awards


·        The Chairman, Sir Sunny Nwosu (KSS)

·        The Special Guest of Honour, Barr. Laide Osijo, FIIN, FCIB

·        The Speaker

·        President of the NCRIB, Mr Ayodapo Shoderu, FIIN, FCIB

·        President of CIIN, Mr F.K Lawal, FIIN

·        The Awardees

·        Gentlemen of the Press

·        Ladies and gentlemen

It is with great pleasure that I welcome you all to this epoch making event which is the first of its kind in the insurance and pension industries. Inspen Nigerian Insurance and Pension Award, was designed to celebrate organisations and individuals who have helped to reshaped activities in the industry and by extension the economy.

The award, which started last year with the recognition of two distinguished individuals and an underwriting company, has now come to stay. This year, we decided to raise the bar by setting high standards to judge the operations of companies and impacts made by individuals in moving insurance and pension business forward. To achieve this, we gave the public the opportunity to select those to be celebrated by calling for votes. Having harmonised the votes which came from different parts of the country, we benchmarked the scores with the set standard to arrive at the winners we are celebrating today.

The award which is in seven categories had 28 nominees of which nine emerged winners.

 Inspen Nigerian Insurance and Pension award is poised at to enhance the image of the sectors, which over the years had suffered low patronage due to bad public perception.

In the one year of our operations, we have made great impact in showcasing the activities in the sectors to global audience. The results are evidenced, as foreign organisations with interest in both sectors regularly write to us to find out how they can do businesses with our local operators.

Just yesterday an organisation based in the United Kingdom that is presently exploring how to project the image of insurance, re-insurance and the pension in Nigeria, appointed us as its media partner in this regard.

Inspenonline had within a short period helped to upload thousands of photographs of events in the sector and news reports to the World Wide Web, a feat that was lacking in time past. The world as you know has become a global village and our relevance lies in the portability of our medium, considering the fact that many of us now possess sophisticated hi-phones through which we could access the web, anywhere we are. We have resolved to continually imprint the insurance and pension industry on these emerging media.

I could remember the rigours I went through trying to get pictures of events in the sectors, when I was working with my former employer. Today, we are changing the game, by ensuring that events in the sectors are not just reported, but displayed in pictorial.

It is funny to observe that even today; the Pictures of most Managing Directors are not available on the internet.  In the course of preparing for this event, we observed that the personal photographs of some Managing Directors are not on the internet. Also observed was that publishable logo of some organisations is not on the net. These issues are what we have decided to tackle to enable the industries enjoy global presence.

On the local front, we are reaching out to the youths who are future prospect for insurance and pension through the social media. The result is improving by the day as people call and mail us to seek clearance on issues.

We will like to use this medium to solicit the cooperation of all operators in both industries to take advantage of our services by giving us information and photographs of major events in their organisations.

We also solicit for advertorial supports to enable us meet our objectives and remain afloat.


Operators in insurance and pension sectors should pull out of the conservative habit exhibited by past practitioners which never helped their businesses. Though some companies are doing well in showcasing their brand, products and services, those that are yet to embrace the trend should wake and leverage all available information dissimilation channels to reach out to the public. For the bad perception affecting the sectors can only changed when the operators tell their stories. 

Once again I thank all for all for your love and attendance of this modest event which, by the grace of God and your cooperation will continue to be better by the year.

God bless.   

Onaolapo is Insurance Man of the Year

Chuks Udo Okonta


The Managing Director Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc, Wale Onaolapo, has emerged the Inspenonline Insurance Man of the year.


His emergence was declared today Wednesday at the Inspen 2013 Nigerian Insurance and Pension awards, in Lagos.    


Onaolapo has worked for three decades both in the underwriting and Broking sectors of the Insurance Industry. He was at various times with Liberty Assurance Company Limited, Ban-Doy Brokers Company, Femi Johnson & Company (Insurance Brokers) and Unitrust Insurance Company Limited.


His experience over the years has exposed him to various facets of insurance, management and general underwriting; marketing and information technology. He joined the pioneer team of International Standard Insurers Limited in 1992 and was responsible for the supervision of the Motor and General Business Department. He is an extremely versatile and knowledgeable underwriter.


Wale, as fondly called by colleagues holds a Diploma in journalism from the London School of Journalism.  He is an Associate of the Chartered Insurance Institute of London and Nigeria respectively. He holds an MBA from Lagos State University with special bias in Marketing Management.


He is an Alumnus of the Lagos Business School having successfully completed the Advanced Management Programme, (AMP 12). He resigned his appointment at International Standard Insurers Limited in 1994 to join the pioneer Management Team of Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc and today, he is

Editor Inspen Media, Chuks Udo Okonta, at the event, said Onaolapo was picked from the votes and other considerations reached by the award planning committee.  

Insurance adjuster charged with defrauding N.J. Turnpike Authority

An N.J. insurance adjuster has been charged with defrauding the New Jersey Turnpike Authority.

An insurance adjuster is charged with defrauding the N.J. Turnpike Authority and insurance companies of more than $200,000.

Robert Napolitano, 54, of Clifton, N.J., the owner of Dawn to Dusk LLC, investigated and provided adjusting services to property and casualty insurance carriers in New Jersey, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Here's more form the complaint:

From October 2011 to June 2013 Napolitano obtained by fraud more than $200,000 from the Turnpike Authority (NJTA) and certain insurance companies in several ways, including instructing insurance companies whose motorists caused damage to the N.J. Turnpike to issue checks payable to Dawn to Dusk. After the checks were mailed to Dawn to Dusk, Napolitano did not forward the payments to the NJTA and instead shared the money with his previously charged conspirator, Gerardo A. Blasi, an NJTA claims manager.

Blasi, 55, of Clifton, pleaded guilty Dec.11, 2013, before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty to an information charging him with using the mails to facilitate a scheme and artifice to defraud the NJTA and certain insurance companies in connection with his theft of more than $1.5 million from the authority and the insurance companies. He is scheduled to be sentenced March 19, 2014.

The fraud count with which Napolitano is charged is punishable by a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense.

U.S. Attorney Fishman credited special agents of the FBI Newark Field Office, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Aaron T. Ford, with the investigation leading to today’s charges.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney David L. Foster of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Special Prosecution’s Division.
Source Philadelphia Business Journal

British insurer RSA says considering a cash call

British insurer RSA said it is considering a rights issue among a range of measures to help repair its balance sheet, the company said on Sunday.

The insurer said it "is considering measures to strengthen its balance sheet, including raising capital by way of a rights issue" in a statement following a Sunday Times newspaper report that it was poised to launch a 800 million pound rights issue.

It added that no final decision has been made at this time.

The firm will give an update on a business review when it publishes its full year results on Thursday, the statement said.

RSA, reeling from an accounting scandal at its Irish business and facing the cost of recent heavy floods in Britain, is also expected to unveil plans to sell off businesses in eastern Europe, the Middle East and Asia, bringing the total cash raised to more than 1 billion pounds, the Sunday Times said.

The firm, led by former Royal Bank of Scotland boss Stephen Hester, has hired JPMorgan and Bank of America Merrill Lynch to handle the fundraising, according to the newspaper.

(Reporting by Clare Hutchison; Editing by Louise Heavens)

Source Reuters

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Pension mortgage financing rests with the National Assembly - PenOP

Chuks Udo Okonta


The proposed mortgage financing by the National Pension Commission (PenCom), which would enable pension contributors access part of their fund to own houses, has to be determined by the National Assembly, Inspen has learnt.


Officers of the Pension Fund Operators Association of Nigeria (PenOp) at a media parley in Lagos, said the proposal is contained in the pension reform bill that is presently before the National Assembly. They noted that the initiative will take effect if only it is passed into law.


Acting Director-General of the Commission, Mrs. Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, last year, disclosed that the commission was exploring the possibility of allowing contributors to utilise part of their Retirement Savings Accounts (RSA) balances to part-finance the acquisition of low-cost houses.


She noted that when the initiative comes on stream contributors from states that are complying with the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) would leverage on it to own their homes.


 She said: “It is our expectation that when they eventually come on stream, these facilities would be availed to states that have fully implemented the scheme,” she said.





Group life: Demand your rights, NAICOM urges workers

Chuks Udo Okonta

The Commissioner for Insurance Fola Daniel, has called on workers to demand from their employers group life insurance cover which will provide succour for them and their families in times of need.

Daniel who disclosed this at a media parley in Lagos, said employers with four employees were mandated under the Pension Reform Act of 2004, to provide insurance cover for their workers, adding that it behooves on workers to ask employers who are subverting the law to comply.

He noted that the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) recent visit to the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) was to provoke its officers to challenge workers to demand their rights from their employers.

He said the government is showing leadership by ensuring that its workers are catered for by the group life policy, and that private employers should do same.

“I want to assure the public that any insurance company that provides group life must pay claims. The company will not just pay when it wants to, but paid promptly,” he said.

Monday, 24 February 2014

ObamaCare headaches at health insurers driving Panviva’s business

Julie M. Donnelly

Confusion over new ObamaCare health plans has health insurers’ phones ringing off the hook — a sound that is music to Panviva’s ears.

The privately-held Australian provider of cloud-based call center software, with U.S. headquarters in Burlington, Mass., expects revenue to grow at least 30 percent in 2014, much of it related to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. Stephen Pappas, the firm's senior vice president of North American operations, declined to pinpoint 2013 revenue, but said it was in the range of $10 million to $20 million. Panviva’s customers include Western Massachusetts insurer Health New England.

Pappas said the 120-person company is now bringing on a new customer every three to five weeks. Six months ago, that was happening every seven to nine weeks.

"I had a health insurer call this morning who said that call times have grown to an hour and a half - between wait time and talk time," Pappas said in an interview. "They are calling with open head wounds, saying, please help me."

Panviva’s product, called SupportPoint Cloud, helps users navigate step-by-step through procedures and processes to provide customer service in person or on the phone. The product is sold to customers in a variety of industries, including telecommunications, manufacturing, utilities and government. Health care is its fastest-growing business segment in the U.S., accounting for 80 percent of U.S. revenue and 40 percent of global revenue. The company is looking to expand its customer base to hospital networks and integrated hospital-insurer organizations. The company also plans to expand the functionality of the software to include wellness programs and care coordination.

Pappas said that one challenge for insurers in states outside of Massachusetts is the large number of new health plan members that have never had insurance before. They not only need a number of questions answered, but they often need customer service representatives to go a step further, helping them to identify members’ questions for them. Pappas said there are two groups of insurers — those that prepared for the ACA, and those that didn’t. He said some insurers who predicted call volumes to rise 25 percent, have instead seen calls grow by 75 percent.

Pappas said another challenge for insurers is to find ways to differentiate themselves, now that federal health reform regulations have created a homogenous slate of Gold, Silver and Bronze health plans. He said the desire to provide stand out customer service is also boosting business for companies like Panviva.

Pappas said insurers’ woes will worsen following the March 31 federal deadline to enroll in ACA-compliant plans, for two reasons: New enrollees will have questions about their explanation-of-benefits forms and those who failed to make the deadline may be scrambling to enroll once they figure out they might have to pay a penalty for going without insurance.

In Massachusetts, there is also likely to be a new wave of high call volume following June 30, which is when the last federal extension expires for Massachusetts residents with subsidized plans .

Source Boston Business Journal

Alliant's Craig Graham and Donald Martin Named 2014 Power Brokers(r) by Risk & Insurance

Graham and Martin honored for exceptional client service within the construction and healthcare industries.

Alliant Insurance Services (, the nation’s largest specialty insurance brokerage firm, has announced that Senior Vice Presidents Craig Graham and Donald Martin have received the designation of Power Broker by Risk & Insurance. Graham and Martin were honored for their creativity in solving risk-related problems, depth of industry knowledge, and high level of client service. Graham was honored in the construction category, while Martin was recognized for excellence in healthcare.

"Alliant’s producers are highly regarded for their ability to go beyond insurance brokerage and serve as client advocates," said Tom Corbett, Chairman and CEO of Alliant. "Craig and Don received this prestigious honor for developing an extensive understanding of their clients’ industries, the business climate, and the risk environment. This approach enabled them to discover new and innovative solutions to both protect their clients and reduce insurance costs in a competitive market."

Graham, Senior Vice President with Alliant Construction Services Group, was honored for his work in securing an "unheard-of deal" for a contractor that is building a tunnel and constructing several high-rise buildings at a New York rail yard. Graham used creative solutions to structure a program that maximized coverage for both projects, while keeping costs at a minimum.

Martin, Senior Vice President with Alliant Healthcare Solutions, the firm’s national healthcare practice, was recognized for delivering dramatic savings to a large specialty children’s hospital in the first year of the contract. His exhaustive program review uncovered numerous opportunities to improve the program, reducing costs by 19 percent.

The Risk & Insurance Power Broker Awards are an annual selection of the most effective and influential commercial insurance brokers. The Power Broker designation is based on nominations by brokers and risk managers, and is judged based on the quality of the application and on references by risk managers in each industry sector. Hundreds of risk managers and risk executives are interviewed in the process of identifying and soliciting, evaluating, and judging the nominees.

About Alliant Insurance Services

Headquartered in Newport Beach, CA, Alliant Insurance Services, Inc. is one of the largest insurance brokerage firms in the United States and has a history dating back to 1925. Alliant provides property and casualty, workers’ compensation, employee benefits, surety, and financial products and services to some 26,000 clients nationwide, including public entities, tribal nations, healthcare, energy, law firms, real estate, construction, and other industry groups. More information is available on the company’s website at:


CIIN seeks better budgetary impact on insurance business

The President, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria, Mr. Fatai Lawal, has said the body is seeking ways to make the 2014 budget enhance the sector’s growth

He said this during the annual business outlook seminar of the institute in Lagos, according to a statement made available on Sunday.

“The 2014 seminar is focusing attention on the national budget, with emphasis on the fiscal and monetary policy thrusts of the Federal Government, and how these will impact on businesses during the year,” he said.

The president observed that the worsening incidence of terrorism as well as the telling effects of environmental factors on lives and property would continue to throw up new challenges for the insurance industry.

Four years ago, Lawal said the institute dedicated its international education conference to climate change and other environmental challenges, and succeeded in creating awareness on the widening scope of risk exposure and the underwriting challenges that these entailed.

During the conference, he said the institute did not foresee the magnitude of the floods in subsequent years; neither did it imagined the spate of bombings, which now characterised the country.

“I am aware of the isolated efforts of some key players in our sector to address these emerging risks. We, however, should go beyond these isolated efforts and forge stronger bonds as an industry in tackling these new challenges. These and more areas of concern must begin to agitate our minds more than ever before,” he said.

Lawal said the governing council of the institute was poised to provide platforms for knowledge sharing and for sharpening the skills of practitioners in order for them to cope with emerging challenges and explore new opportunities.

“The council is also expanding the frontiers of insurance education by supporting the teaching and learning of insurance as a course of study in both the secondary and tertiary institutions in the country,” he said.

Lawal noted that it was pertinent to reiterate the need for all hands to be on deck to ensure that the industry’s human capital continued to brace up for current and emerging challenges.

The CIIN boss said continuous professional development was not only important in itself, but was also a point-scoring exercise and a requirement for sustaining membership of many professional bodies, including the institute.

Source Punch


Sunday, 23 February 2014

When’s an insurer not an insurer?

By Bruce Cameron

When is a company that sells you protection against an event a short-term insurer and when is it not? The Financial Services Board (FSB) is investigating this question.

The issue was highlighted recently when the FSB took action against My Lawyer Legal Assistance for selling a product that protected consumers in the event of legal action being taken against them.

The FSB’s Enforcement Committee fined My Lawyer Legal Assistance R200 000 for selling what the FSB regarded as an insurance policy that was not underwritten by a registered insurer.

Jonathan Dixon, the FSB’s deputy executive in charge of insurance, says that if a company sells policies that provide cover against an unexpected event, it has to meet a number of requirements under the Short Term Insurance Act. One of these is that it must hold sufficient reserves to ensure that it can pay you out.

The Registrar of Short-term Insurance found that, between November 2011 and January 2014, My Lawyer marketed and sold policies that were not underwritten by a registered insurer, in contravention of the Short Term Insurance Act.

In mitigation, the registrar considered that My Lawyer accepted responsibility for the contravention, and its "conduct and contravention of the Act was never deliberate or intentional and done bona fide based on research, consultations with industry experts and legal opinion. Also, My Lawyer has put measures in place to rectify the contravention in that it is in the process of securing an underwriter for its insurance business," the FSB says in a media release.

The action against My Lawyer raises the question of when a company is, and when it is not, an insurer. For example, is a motor plan a short-term insurance policy, particularly because it means that the vehicle manufacturer or retailer has made a future commitment to you?

Dixon told Personal Finance that the distinction between insurance contracts and certain types of maintenance contract is not always clear-cut. This is not a problem that is peculiar to South Africa, nor is it a new one.

"Our approach has always been that each product must be considered on its own merits. When we consider a product, we take into account the provisions of the Short Term and the Long Term Insurance Acts, the common law essentials of an insurance contract, case law, academic writings, policy considerations, and the like.

"Taking the example of motor plans, each plan would have to be assessed on its own merits. Where a motor plan offers a warranty, such a warranty would constitute insurance business for purposes of the Short Term Insurance Act. However, where it offers only a service plan covering future services and the wear and tear of parts, such plan would not constitute insurance business, as the servicing of a vehicle is not an uncertain event (as required by the Short Term Insurance Act), nor is wear and tear."

Dixon says the FSB is considering a research project on the issue, possibly to provide more clarity on what constitutes insurance cover.

Source Independent Online

IFRS requirements must be consistent - Insurance Europe

With the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) expected to grant approval this week for the finalisation of the international standard for accounting for financial instruments (IFRS 9), Insurance Europe calls for the standard to be compatible with that proposed for insurance contracts (IFRS4 Phase II).

Insurance Europe welcomes the IASB's efforts to ensure consistency between the two standards. It is of paramount importance to insurers that the standards appropriately reflect that they manage their liabilities, guarantees and related assets together.

Insurance Europe is pleased that the IASB has retained two fair value measurement categories in IFRS 9: one through other comprehensive income (FVOCI) and one through profit or loss (FVPL). However, it is concerned that IFRS 9's fair value option for financial assets remains too restricted and prevents insurers from accounting for all of their activities on a FVPL basis, when consistent with their business model.

Moreover, Insurance Europe urges the IASB to amend the restriction on equities before issuing the final IFRS 9 standard. Although the standard has a FVOCI category for equity instruments, the restriction on recycling means that this approach is not consistent with the nature of the insurance liability.

This is particularly true for participating contracts, where the investment returns (gains and losses) are ultimately passed to the policyholder or to the shareholders/owners. Not to show these movements in the profit and loss account would not provide a faithful representation of a company's performance

Source Noodls


Saturday, 22 February 2014





Tuesday 18th February 2014

T A Braithwaite Events Centre

Insurance Brokers House

58, Moleye Street

Alagomeji, Yaba, Lagos.




The President/Chairman-in-Council of The Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers, Members of the Governing Council here present, CEO’s of Brokerage firms, Members of the Council, Gentlemen of the Press, Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen.

Let me express the appreciation of my Company to the President and the Executive of the Council for the partnership of this event.  Niger Insurance Plc is noted for its great respect for the Brokerage industry and shall continue to nurture this relationship for the betterment of the Industry.

Let me also seize this opportunity to appreciate the leadership and entire members of NCRIB on this edifice.  It is a testimony of how well the industry has come.  And to the brand new President, I say congratulations once again, on your ascension of the mantle of leadership.  May the Lord grant you the wisdom and good health to make a difference.

This evening, I wish to share my thoughts on the challenges of insurance of public buildings. In doing this, I shall be looking at the scope of the Act, the optimism of business generation, the reality of implementation and its challenges, and my view as regards the way forward.

The essence of this discussion is to elicit more views which at the end of the day should assist the regulator and the industry to come up with a position that would assist in achieving a common objective.


The Insurance Act of 2003 made provisions for a number of compulsory insurances amongst which is the insurance of public buildings. Section 65 of the said Act provides thus:

“Every public building shall be insured with a registered insurer against the hazards of collapse, fire, earthquake, storm and flood

The Act defines public buildings as including:

a. Tenement house

b. Hostel

c.  Building occupied by a tenant, lodger or licensee

d. Building where the public have ingress and aggress for the purpose of obtaining educational or medical services or recreation or transaction of business. This would include eateries, restaurants, internet cafes, shopping malls etc.


Note:  The Lagos State Building Control Law of 2010 also defines a public building as any building which is not used 100% by the owner for residential purposes.

The Act further identifies possible insured which could be either the owner or occupier of premises. The risks which should be covered under this insurance include:

a. Loss or damage to property

b. Injury and death suffered by any user of the premises or third parties.

Punishment for non-compliance with this provision is stated as either a fine of N100,000 and/or imprisonment of one year.

For a better understanding of this provision, it is worthy to mention that the risks covered under the public building insurance is similar to those covered under a standard fire policy. The difference being that the fire policy does not cover the risk of spontaneous collapse. The form of collapse covered under the standard fire policy is collapse as a direct result of fire, earthquake, etc.   Therefore, the insurance of public buildings is different from a standard fire policy and therefore risk factors to be considered in the former exceeds those of the latter.  For public building insurance, the mode and quality of the building vis-a-vis the probability of collapse is an essential factor.

On the face of it, this provision should provide a lot of benefits to Nigerians taking into cognisance the incessant collapse of buildings nationwide especially in Lagos State. This is often accompanied by fatal consequences together with human and material losses. Likewise, incidences of flooding recorded in Lagos, Ibadan and some other parts of the country. Insurance of public buildings is meant to provide an avenue for compensation to third parties and users of damaged properties. As with all compulsory insurances, it provides a socio-economic function in the society. However, despite all efforts by the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), the regulatory authority saddled with the implementation of the Act including the launching of the Market Development and Restructuring Initiative (MDRI), not much has been achieved in the implementation or enforcement of this provision. This confirms the opinion of experts on compulsory insurance that it should be restricted to areas where a need is generally felt and in sectors where supervision is possible at a reasonable cost.

Nevertheless, it is important to stress that problems associated with the insurance of public buildings cannot be divorced from the general problems of the Nigerian Insurance Industry, though some peculiar challenges are identified.

NAICOM, in its Corporate Strategic Plan 2011-2015’ (pg. 21) had listed  ‘poor compliance culture’, ‘inadequate legislative and legal framework’, ‘poor public perception of NAICOM as a regulator’ and ‘public resistance to insurance’ as threats to the industry. Therefore, the challenges which I would like to address at this forum are basically the following: ineffective legal framework, poor compliance culture, lack of awareness on the part of the public, and finally, ineffective implementation of strategy adopted by NAICOM.


Generally, the legislative framework for insurance practice in Nigeria is inadequate and ineffective. Often times we find the law making unenforceable provisions which though good on paper is almost impracticable without strong enforcement provisions. The law makes provisions for NAICOM to enforce the insurance laws against insurance companies through the inspectorate division in the Commission but provides no means of enforcement against the public in general. The Commission has no power of arrest irrespective of the fact that there are sanctions provided in law. How would arrest and legal action be taken to ensure sanctions are meted out to individuals in breach of the law? 

It is pertinent to note that before the Insurance Act of 2003, there were compulsory insurances in place such as the third party motor insurance and the workmen compensation policy (now abolished). They had separate enactment for them such as the Motor Vehicle (Third Party Insurance) Act 1945 and the Workmen’s Compensation Act of 1990.

In the case of the compulsory third party Section 17 Motor Vehicle (Third Party Insurance) Act, police officers are empowered to ask anyone driving a motor vehicle to produce his/her certificate of insurance. Similarly, Section 40 of the Workmen’s Compensation Act gave the minister of labour power to enforce the compulsory insurance provisions of the Act. This position was reinforced in the Insurance Act of 2003. Therefore, the police force and the ministry of labour ensured compliance with these provisions respectively.

Unlike the above two, there is no separate enactment for compulsory insurance of public buildings. This inadequate legal framework makes it completely difficult to enforce the provision considering the fact that legal provisions on compulsory insurances have never been enforced against the public by NAICOM or any regulatory body at their inception.

Consequently, rather than have new compulsory insurances such as for buildings under construction, occupier’s liability, and insurances of public buildings lumped under the Insurance Act, it would have been more pragmatic to have a separate Act of parliament for each and every one of them. Each of these Acts would then provide relevant enforcement agencies though the benefits on the long run accrue to the insurance industry in form of increasing   patronage and growth. In the case of the insurance of public buildings, all States physical planning authorities should be empowered to enforce the provisions of the Act.

It is equally important to note that the provisions for insurance of public buildings even as they are in the Insurance Act are quite confusing. The law provides that either the owner or the occupier of the premises can insure public buildings. The policy is meant to cover legal liabilities of either owner or occupier. At what point in time does the occupier have legal liabilities or insurable interest in the building he or she is occupying? This is considering the fact that where the tenancy agreement does not transfer liability of collapse or damage to the tenant, insurable interest may not exist on the part of the occupier. Similarly, an occupier of a building may not be the legal tenants. Also, where there are multiple tenants, e.g. in a multi-storey building where we have a hospital, a restaurant and hostel on different floors, how would liability or insurable interest be determined among the tenants.

It is common knowledge that the principles of insurable interest and indemnity are important aspects of a valid insurance contract. No one can insure a building for which it has no insurable interest i.e. a financial relationship recognised at law. Similarly, indemnity is often dependent on the level of insurable interest an insured has in a building. More legal clarification would be required to ensure that a chaotic situation does not arise in the implementation of the provision on insurance of public building.


The Act came up with good intention and introduced penalties for non-compliance but created a gap as regards enforcement.  The implication is that in an environment where insurance is not too popular, coupled with low level of disposable income, it becomes very difficult to realise the objectives of the Act.



As earlier noted, there are no enforcement provisions for NAICOM regarding the insurance of public buildings. However, NAICOM did make attempts at implementation which is quite commendable despite the inadequacies of the provision. These involved advertisement and awareness creation programs in all the geographical zones of the country. It also included mobilizing, training and sensitisation of relevant agencies such as the fire service and the police force.  Members of the Insurance Consumers Association of Nigeria (INSCAN) were also involved. Fliers conveying information on the product and the benefits available were also distributed.

All these efforts cost a lot of money but did not yield positive results. It may have been more beneficial to use persuasive approach through the registered associations of businesses which the law listed as requiring insurance of public buildings. These are associations of businesses offering medical services, educational services or recreation services. It could also involve landlord associations in various communities.  These associations would be a more effective and efficient means of reaching out to these individuals and businesses about the requirement of law and the implications of a breach. NAICOM can through this means hold talks or seminars on how to comply and possibly facilitate a platform for cooperation between insurers and these various groups and businesses. This would ultimately help secure more insurance penetration in other sectors of the economy and possible market and product development for different segments of the insurance market.

In conclusion however, the practise of compulsory property insurance or insurance of public building is not wide spread in the world so it is innovative and therefore, may require innovative steps in order to accomplish its objectives.

Countries that have followed in Nigeria’s steps include Ghana through its Insurance Act of 2006.

However, its experiences do not differ from that of Nigeria. Nevertheless, a few lessons could be learnt from Ghana. There, consultations were made with reinsurance and insurance companies which led to the adjustment of policy wordings of a standard fire policy to accommodate the provisions of the law. The Ghanaian National Insurance Commission (NIC) also set the limit on third party liabilities in respect of this cover. While not campaigning for the adoption of Ghanaian methods, it may be worthwhile to consider their experiences in finding a solution to the challenges of insurance ob public buildings business here in Nigeria. On the other hand, Kenya is also proposing this law!

The Korean situation is also worthy of note. Here the law differentiates between legal liabilities of the owner and the tenant. The liability for fire is placed on the tenant while that of bodily injury and death is placed on the owner of the building.

In view of the above, a multi-dimensional approach would be necessary for the resolution of challenges associated with the insurance of public buildings.


Mr. President, Niger Insurance Plc, is willing to partner with key stakeholders like NAICOM and NCRIB in addressing the challenges enumerated above and ensuring the workability of the policy all with the aim of creating a better business prospect for the industry.

We have continuously worked on our service delivery mechanism, improved our ICT process that makes business interaction seamless between us, brokers and customers, while enhancing the manpower capacity of our personnel, all with the primary purpose of fulfilling our vision of becoming the insurance Company of first choice.


The President/Chairman-In-Council, distinguished brokers in the house, gentlemen of the press, ladies and gentlemen.  What I have attempted to do is to share my thought on this very important aspect of the business that holds so much opportunity for the industry but is being affected by systemic issues that need to be resolved if we are all to benefit.  I hope all stakeholders, i.e. the insurance industry, the legislature, the building industry and the general public will work together in order to make this policy work.