Professional bodies embrace group life cover
… NAICOM lauds level of penetration
EFFORTS of industry regulators and market self-regulatory associations to entrench transparency in the conduct of insurance transactions, especially in claims settlement, are beginning to yield positive results, as a number of professional bodies in the country have embraced group life assurance scheme for their members.
Industry chieftains expressed delight that it was a welcome development for the industry because as enlightened professional group, it will help to spread the advantages of insurance as the basic risks transfer mechanism. Besides, the industry will now know that these are sophisticated groups the practitioners must not take for granted, but as significant avenue to test the integrity of the industry and bring the market to the nest level.
It will be recalled that in August last year, the management of Leadway Assurance Company Limited, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for the provision of group life policy for their members.
This year also, FBN Insurance Limited and the Society of Gynaecology and Obstetrics of Nigeria (Lagos Sector) put their signature to a (MoU) to provide group life assurance scheme and professional indemnity cover for their members, with sum assured ranging from N1.5 and above depending on the premium paid.
The Assistant General Manager (Business Development), FBN Insurance Limited, Supo Sogelola, who spoke to The Guardian said the group life cover provides for N1.5 million cover per medical practitioner and a professional indemnity cover of N1 million per practitioner.
According to him, in Nigeria we look forward to greater insurance penetration, and with this agreement we have reached with the doctors, we are looking forward to partnering with other groups to deepen penetration because there are great benefits of insurance the public are yet to take advantage of.
He said that the doctors have seen the advantages of this scheme. They told us during one of our meetings that when they lost one or two of their members, the society could only give between N100,000 and N200,000 to the family. We told them that the society need not pay anything, but insurance is there for you to take care of. You can pay a small amount of premium and we would provide you covers ranging from N500,000 to N5 million depending on the premium you have paid. You can give a substantial amount of N1 million to the wife or family of the deceased of they embrace the cover, they found it beneficial.
According to him, a person who has just lost somebody will be thinking of school fees, rent to be paid, what are the children going to eat, and you got a cheque of N1 million to the wife, she may be mourning, however, but will thank God our daddy left something to take care of us. This is why they have embraced this programme. We also provide professional indemnity cover, it is compulsory policy for all doctors. They have left something for their family at a price of the little money they give to people on daily basis.
Sogelola said that in Nigeria today, there are greater awareness and penetration of insurance, as people are taking advantage of the benefits of insurance, with this agreement, we look forward whereby other professional bodies will key into it because there are advantages in every sector buying insurance for their lives and businesses.
The Deputy Commissioner for Insurance (Finance & Admin), George Onekena, in his remark said that the professionals have discovered that insurance is a gold mine. It has always been there, it is very significant if we have these professional organisations coming to buy insurance, the issue of non-payment of claims will not arise, because they have the power and pressure to force any insurance company trying to misbehave to sit up, it is very significant .
According to him, I am very excited to hear that, it is good for the industry. I feel people should embrace this scheme for the interest of the family left behind when people die. The public may not be aware that the premium in this cover is very cheap.
He said, “The world has become more risky, we are living in a world that is very dangerous, whether you go by air, on land, the comfort you can have is if you take insurance cover and you know that you have put something behind for your family to take care of their schools, feeding, accommodation, etc when you are no longer there. It is very important”.
Therefore, I want to encourage all the professional bodies, Nigerians generally, big or small to buy insurance because the world is becoming more dangerous by the day, he said.
The Managing Director/CEO, FBN Insurance Limited, Val Ojumah, said on the need for insurance “While insurance penetration remains low, Nigeria’s population is growing rapidly and is forecast to reach 209 million in 2021. 50 per cent of that population will be younger than 25 years.
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