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Committee rejects insurance brokers’ bill

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THE Senate Committee on Banking, Finance and other financial institutions, on Monday, rejected the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers Act 2003, (repeal and re-enactment) Bill, 2015.

The bill, which seeks to establish the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB), as a regulator and practitioner, was thrown out at a public hearing held in Abuja.

The development followed the advice from stakeholders, who argued that it would be inappropriate for the council to act as a regulator.

Prof. Joe Irukwu, Chairman, Insurance Industry Law Review Committee, insisted that if the bill was passed, it would be in conflict with the provisions of the existing Act.

He explained that the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) was already empowered to supervise and regulate insurance industry, adding that there was no need to duplicate its functions.

“This bill, if enacted, will be in conflict with the provisions of Act 22 of 1993, which empowers the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) to determine the standard of knowledge and skills to be attained by insurance professionals.

“If this bill is passed as proposed, it will compromise standard and make the discipline of insurance practitioners inimical to future growth of the industry.

“The CIIN, having consulted with all stakeholders, prays that the bill should be aborted,’’ he said.

Irukwu said the termination of the bill was in the interest of the insuring public, the insurance industry and insurance practitioners across the country.

The Deputy President of NCRIB, Mr Emmanuel Okunoren, also kicked against the passage of the bill.

He said that members of the organisation unanimously agreed at its Annual General Meeting that the content of the bill would not be in the interest of the insurance industry and the public.

“We hereby rescind all our support concerning the bill and pray that the bill should not be passed into law,” he said.

The Commissioner for Insurance, NAICOM, Mr Fola Daniel, also supported the move that the bill be dropped, saying that no institution should be made operator and regulator of itself at the same time.

Reacting to the views of the stakeholders, the Chairman of the Committee, Sen. Bassey Otu, PDP-Cross River South, laid the bill to rest.

He said there was no point proceeding with a bill that would be unfavourable to stakeholders.

“I think we do agree that this bill is finally dead; so this bill stands dead,” he said. (NAN)



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