Insurance firms cough out $4million for infractions

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MATTHEW OTOIJAGHA

The regulatory body of the insurance sector, the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), has fined some insurance firms over $4 million (N1.46 billion) as penalties for various infractions.

The Commissioner for Insurance, Mohammed Kari, who stated this over the weekend at a two-day seminar for insurance correspondents in Benin, the Edo State capital, said NAICOM will up its ante this year.

Kari, who was represented by the Deputy Commissioner, Technical, Sunday Thomas, said the Commission has stepped up its regulatory action and, saying there would be no sacred cows anymore in the sector.

He pointed out that any operator that defaults, will be given opportunity to defend itself, but would be made to pay the price if found to have defaulted, stressing that adequate warnings have been given to the operators.

Speaking on some areas where the Commission has issued warnings to operators, he said operators were in the past granting blind insurance covers to clients without having information, or data of the type of risks they were insuring, pointing out that the Commission is trying to eliminate blind covers that have caused the industry a lot of trouble.

According to him, “For instance, insurers grant covers to government agencies and parastatals without knowing, or having the data of workers to be covered. “But no company will dare do it again because we have issued circulars to them to stop such transactions from occurring again.

‘’They must not even insure the Ministry of Defence without having their information otherwise insurance cannot be granted. There is nowhere in the world where blind covers are granted. We have step into it and have issued appropriate circulars warning the underwriters and we are sure they heard us very clearly.’’

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