The Nigeria Insurers Association (NIA) has once again warned motorists on Nigerian roads against holding any paper in the name of insurance certificate just to pass police check points.
To this end, the association has advised motorists to use the opportunity of its technology-driven Nigerian Insurance Industry Data- base (NIID), to verify the genuineness of the insurance certificates they are holding, especially for the compulsory motor insurance third party certificate.
NIA, which is the umbrella body of all licenced insurance companies in Nigeria, has also urged all licenced insurance companies to ensure they upload on the NIID portal all motor insurance policies they have sold so far, in order to help the association succeed in its ongoing fight against fake motor and marine insurance certificates.
Findings by THISDAY revealed that even with the NIID, some criminals are taking advantage of failure by some genuine insurers to upload the motor policies they have sold on the NIID portal to still parade their fake certificates and sell the same to unsuspecting members of the public.
Against this backdrop, the NIA Director General, Mrs Yetunde Ilori, has vowed to ensure that every motorist patronises licenced insurers.
Prior to the advent of the NIID, motor insurance ranked first among the compulsory five insurance policies that suffer abuses by the fake insurance certificate sellers.
The genuine insurers, officially charge N5,000 for the motor insurance third party certificate, the fakers charged as low as N1,000.
Their business continued to boom until 2011, when the NIA developed ways of identifying fake and genuine certificate. This gave rise to the NIID which the association described as the only central record of all insured vehicles in Nigeria as well as one of the most important tools to ensure that only insured vehicles are driven on Nigerian roads.
The association evolved the ‘AskNIID’ model used by authorised law enforcement agencies to enforce motor insurance law.
With the NIID in place, once a motorist buys motor insurance policy from a genuine insurance firm, an alert of genuineness of the policy is automatically sent to his phone for confirmation.
Ilori urged vehicle owners, who buy either third party or comprehensive insurance, to ask the insurer to upload the policy on the NIID platform.
The association, she said had fined some insurance companies who did not upload motor policies sold on the platform, adding that the NIID remains one of the best ways to curb fake motor insurance policy.
“The NIID portal is the only central record of all insured vehicles in Nigeria. As one of the most important tools to ensure that only insured vehicles are driven on our roads, the ASKNIID is used by authorised law enforcement agencies to enforce motor vehicle insurance law.
“Vehicle owners, especially in Lagos State, where law enforcement agencies have come up with automated ways of checking whether your particulars are genuine, is where many people need to verify the genuineness of the insurance certificate before they get caught by the authorities for carrying fake insurance.
“When you take up your insurance, check the industry platform where insurance companies are supposed to upload whatever motor insurance they sell whether third party, comprehensive or whatever.”