By Chiamaka Ajeamo
Following the effects of the COVID-19 and the ensuing downturns in the economy, the President of the Insurance Industry Consultative Council (IICC), Muftau Oyegunle, has called on governments at all levels to prioritise and adopt insurance as a risk mitigator to encourage economic sustainability.
Oyegunle, made this call at the 2020 media retreat organised by IICC at the College of Insurance and Financial Management (CIFM) Asese, Ogun State.
According to him, the Covid 19 and the consequent downturn of the economy has increased the level of poverty in Nigeria and the message to governments at various levels is that for sustainability, insurance must be built into most of the support governments are offering. For example, he noted that the government can make health insurance compulsory by subsidising the premium, noting it has been done successfully in other countries.
“It may interest you to know that common malaria kills more people in Nigeria than Covid”, he said.
According to Oyegunle, the recent collapse of 21 storeys 360 degrees apartment at Gerald Road, Ikoyi on November 1, 2021, where 45 deaths have so far been recorded with many wounded without any insurance cover exposed the level of decadence in the society. “It simply revealed the level of culture of settlement in our country,” he said.
While soliciting the support of the media for the growth of the industry, he highlighted some of the rationales behind the IICC annual media retreat for insurance Correspondents.
He said “This forum also serves the purpose of further unifying all arms of the Insurance Industry who have come together under one umbrella, the IICC, in order to ensure unity and single-mindedness in promoting the insurance industry agenda.
“I would like to refresh your memories by stating that the IICC was formed with the following objectives which are aimed at raising the profile of the industry as well as increasing its relevance to the nation’s economic growth. The objectives include: acting as an industry voice for national matters; acting as a platform for intra industry conflict resolution; promoting the industry’s image and growth agenda and taking up and assuming any other role that may serve the best interest of the insurance industry.
“Therefore, I would like to seize this opportunity to express our profound appreciation to the media for its immeasurable support. The media, especially the insurance correspondents have continued to demonstrate expertise and in-depth knowledge about the insurance industry as has been reflected in their objective reportage over the years,” he expressed.