NAICOM Urges Brokers to Expand Branch Network

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Ebere Nwoji

The National Insurance Commission(NAICOM) has advised insurance brokers to establish their presence in all the nooks and crannies of the country to accelerate insurance penetration and financial inclusion.

The Acting Commissioner for Insurance, Mr. Sunday Thomas, gave the counsel when the delegation of the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers, led by Mrs. Bola Onigbogi paid a visit to the commission in Abuja.

Thomas, said the vision to have the nation’s critical population accept and patronise insurance services would only be achieved if insurance brokers extend more of their operations to remote areas of the country, rather than the urban areas.

While promising the support of NAICOM in accelerating insurance growth by collaborating with all insurance stakeholders, the commissioner advised operators, particularly insurance brokers to be more creative in their product development initiatives so as to make insurance first line of consideration by Nigerians, irrespective of their location and financial status.

Thomas, lamented the over concentration of insurance companies and brokerage firms in major cities and their reliance on government accounts, stressing that there would not be effective enforcement of compulsory insurances in the hinterland with poor presence of underwriting and brokerage firms there.

Responding to Onigbogi’s appeal on insurance penetration, which is the cardinal focus of her thrust of office as the president and chairman NCRIB council, Thomas noted that the issue of enforcement of insurance in Nigeria has always been on demand and supply side.

In the same vein, the commissioner assumed that NAICOM would use its zonal offices to sensitise members of the public about the importance of insurance.

He, however, said all hands should be on deck to ensure that the supply side through operators are always available when the market is opened.

In deepening insurance penetration, the acting commissioner alluded to the fact that irrespective of operators’ poor presence at some states and local government areas, issues of building collapses, fire incidences in offices and market places, motor accidents, flood and other insurable disasters have not abated in the country.