The Commissioner for Insurance, Mr Sunday Thomas, has urged insurance companies to take claims settlement seriously because it is necessary to boost the image of the insurance industry.
Thomas said this in Lagos at an event for insurance companies recently, according to a statement.
He said, “One issue that has been setting the industry on a reverse gear in its developmental efforts is the issue of claims settlement. A few among us have been making this work a tedious one by not paying claims promptly.
“We should know as a fact that insurance business is about payment of genuine claims and anything short of that will continue to hurt insurance business in the country, thereby giving the industry poor reputation, perception and image. I urge you to look at this issue at your level and deal with it decisively as it has continued to give the industry a bad name.”
Thomas said the rapid changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic on many fronts had drastically opened doors of opportunities for many and created serious setbacks for many who were not able to cope with the speed at which some of these changes occurred.
According to him, an obvious example is the technological advancement in the insurance industry, which has been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, compelling many companies to shift from the traditional ways of conducting business to more sophisticated and technology-driven mechanisms.
He said while it had not been so difficult for some companies to adapt to the new world order, a lot of others had been struggling to cope.
Thomas said, “The commission, on its part, successfully launched the NAICOM Portal on 1st September, 2021, deployed to ensure effective and efficient interface between the commission and our stakeholders.
“The commission had since directed all operators to integrate their operations with the portal. It is imperative to inform you here that any company that is lagging behind in this regard is inadvertently phasing itself out of business.”
He said the underwriters’ respective attitude towards information technology funding in their various companies would go a long way in determining the longevity and existence of not only the companies, but the retention of the brand names or corporate identities.
According to him, the volatility, dynamism and complexities in the operations of today’s businesses have necessitated a risk-based approach to the way the regulator conducts its supervision and inspection of insurance entities.
He said it was on this premise that the commission commenced the implementation of risk-based supervision of the sector.
“We incepted the conduct of a pilot inspection of some select companies to full implementation and the reports are now being reviewed. Going forward, inspection of insurance entities will be on the RBS approach,” it added.