The pan-Yoruba socio-political organization, Afenifere, has berated the leadership of the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) over the recent increment of insurance premium.
The leadership of NAICOM.had last week announced that the third party premium insurance rate for motorists will now go for N15,000 from N5,000.
It was explained that private car owners who were paying N5,000 premium per vehicle for N1 million Third Party Property Damage (TPPD) limit, are now to pay N15,000 for N3 million TPPD, while staff busses owners are to pay N20,000 premium per vehicle for N3 million TPPD. The increase is to affect other brands of vehicles that are supposed to take insurance covers.
However, Afenifere called on NAICOM to rethink its recent decision to increase the minimum insurance.
Afenifere’s Publicity Secretary, Comrade Jare Ajayi, reacting to the increment stated that rationale behind the hike “is difficult to fathom”.
He said “Some agencies of this government seem to derive pleasure in inflicting pains on the people of Nigeria. The Federal Ministries of Education and Labour as well as the Nigerian National Petroleum Company etc. can be mentioned here. The National Insurance Commission now came up with an unprecedented hike of over 200 per cent in the amount of money a person has to pay to get the minimum insurance cover.
“This was done at a time when another government agency, National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) described 63 per cent of Nigerians (i.e. 133 million) as suffering multi-dimensional poverty just as unemployment is at an all-time high.
“With cost of living so high, with personal income dwindling so much and with uncertainty so pervasive, why would it be now that NAICOM would raise the cost of insurance premium?
“Many could not get their claims from their insurance companies despite several efforts made. Many died in the process while many abandoned the claims because they could not get it years after.
“Thus, NAICOM, which is prepared to ‘sanction’ insurance companies that fail to enforce the new tariff has not been known to sanction these companies when they fail to meet their obligations to their clients who make claims on them – thus raising the question as to whose interest exactly is NAICOM out to protect?”
He added that NAICOM ought to concern itself first with whether insurance companies are fulfilling their own side of the contract entered into with their clients before it arbitrarily jerked up the fee for insurance covers.
“It is a matter of serious concern to us that NAICOM, like some other government agencies here, appears to fatalistically gloat when policies are put in place to bring pain to Nigerians. Otherwise, why should motor owners be asked to pay 200 per cent more than they have been paying for an insurance cover – especially when it is known that such high cost would be passed on to the poor Nigerians who patronize the motorists.”