Remarks by Mohammed Kari, Commissioner for Insurance, Federal Republic of Nigeria during a courtesy visit on His Excellency, the Governor of Kaduna State, Malam Nasir El-Rufai on Friday October 6, 2017 at Government House, Kaduna.
I would like to start by expressing our gratitude to His Excellency for granting us audience at a very short notice. We cherish and appreciate this opportunity not only to pay homage but to apprise Your Excellency of our mission in Kaduna. On behalf of the Management and staff of the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), I say thank you.
At this juncture, I must commend your giant strides aimed at taking Kaduna State several notches higher. We salute your drive.
Your Excellency, I am accompanied to Kaduna by the Management team of NAICOM and as well, senior Finance/Insurance Editors and Correspondents of major Newspapers, Television and Radio stations from as far as Abuja and Lagos. We are in Kaduna for the annual seminar for Insurance journalists hosted by the Commission to continually update the press of developments and initiatives in the Insurance sector.
The National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) is the statutory body established to regulate and supervise the Nigerian Insurance Industry. The Commission derives its regulatory and supervisory powers from the National Insurance Commission and Insurance Acts of 1997 and 2003 respectively.
As an agency of the Federal Government, the Commission’s activities are coordinated from our headquarters in Abuja. Besides this, we currently have a Control office in Lagos and four zonal offices in Kano, Enugu, Port Harcourt and Ilorin. New offices and branches are being considered now to ensure wider coverage and support to consumers and providers of insurance services.
Your Excellency, in line with our Strategic Road-map, the Commission has set out reforms needed to re-position the Nigerian Insurance Sector to effectively serve our growing population and most importantly the financially under-serviced low-income segment.
Notwithstanding Nigeria’s vast population, insurance had a mixture of myth, misunderstanding and ignorance defining it. Cultural issues and attitudes have continued to hinder the role of insurance in fast-tracking Nigeria’s economic growth.
In keying into the Federal Government’s Financial System Strategy that visioned Nigeria of being a world’s top twenty economy by the year 2020, (FSS2020 development framework), the Commission initiated the “Market Development and Restructuring Initiative” (MDRI) in 2009. The program has among its objectives, the promotion of public understanding of insurance; the building of confidence on the Nigerian Insurance Market, the enforcement and monitoring of compulsory insurances in Nigeria so as to grow premium income for the benefit of the Nigerian economy, thereby increasing insurance density and it’s contribution to GDP.
Having completed the first phase of execution which was devoted to awareness creation across the six geopolitical zones, the Commission is now at the verge of kick-starting the second phase of the MDRI project which is focused on implementation and enforcement of compulsory insurances across the country.
Some of these compulsory insurances enshrined in various extant laws of the country include: Motor Vehicle (Third Party) Liability Insurance
Builders Liability Insurance (Buildings under construction)
Occupiers Liability Insurance on Public Building
Healthcare Professional Liability Insurance
Group Life Insurance.
These compulsory insurances put in place by various legislation in the country including the Insurance Act of 2003, are imperative because they mainly protect the interest of the third party.
Your Excellency, this brings us to the crux of our visit to you this morning.. We are here first, to seek your “No Objection” to hold our retreat in your territory and secondly to seek the support and collaboration of the Kaduna State Government in enforcing compliance with these compulsory insurances in the State as we intend to establish a physical presence in Kaduna. In the absence of our active presence, charlatans have moved in to deceive insurance consumers and government alike that they are offering genuine insurance products and protection.
Your Excellency, your government and state was at one time a victim. But for our timely intervention the damage would have been unimaginable. We believe this collaboration will open up several opportunities that will be to the benefit of the state as well as the insurance industry when consummated. We have developed a guideline that will make for easy execution of the collaboration and partnership.
Benefits that would accrue to the state from this collaboration include: The provision of genuine insurance products to the government and people of Kaduna State
Opening of another veritable source of Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) for the State Government
Creation of employment for the citizenry
It will free government of the burden of having to compensate victims from its scarce resources in the event of occurrence of mishaps or natural disaster.
Let me once again congratulate Your Excellency for the laudable achievement witnessed in the state within the shortest period of your administration. We salute your dynamism, vision, resilience, perseverance, leadership qualities and shared determination in developing Kaduna state and by extension, Nigeria. We wish you the very best at the helms of affairs. Feel free to consider us as partners in further progress.
We wish you success in office and pray to the Almighty to continue to entrench peaceful co-existence in this strategic state and to strengthen and guide you aright.
Commissioner for Insurance, Nigeria