‘9.5 million uninsured vehicles affecting industry’s penetration’
There are indications that only about 2.53 million out of the 12 million registered vehicles on Nigerian roads have genuine motor insurance, leaving about 9.5 million uninsured.
Some of these 9.5 million vehicles that are not insured use fake motor insurance papers, while the others do not have certificates at all.
Also, many others who had genuine insurance papers fail to renew when their policies expire. The Federal Roads Safety Corps (FRSC) Act demands that any automobile on the roads must have, at least, a third party motor insurance policy.
Third-party vehicle insurance comes at a fixed price of N5, 000 for privately used saloons and SUVs, while commercially-used vehicles are charged N7, 500.
The insurance industry is losing billions of naira on motor insurance to fake policy hawkers who sell only papers to motorists.
Investigations also revealed that most drivers go for fake insurance certificates because it is cheap and to evade arrest as they have little or no knowledge of the benefits of an insurance cover.
Other uninsured motorists, it was learnt, prefer to bribe their way out with law enforcement agents in the case they are accosted on the roads.
But insurance operators, led by NIA, said they are set to tackle the menace of fake motor insurance papers on Nigerian roads by launching a campaign tagged: ‘Wetin U Carry’, where vehicle owners can confirm the authenticity of their insurance papers by dialing *565*11# on their phones.
Speaking at an event to unveil the initiative in Lagos, the Director-General, NIA, Mrs. Yetunde Ilori, said the 2.53 million vehicles registered on the Nigerian Insurance Industry Database (NIID) are those with genuine insurance papers, noting that most motorists are either uninsured or parading fake certificates.
She warned motorists with fake vehicle certificates not to expect claims when an accident happens, unlike those with certificates, urging vehicle owners to confirm the genuineness of their insurance coverage with the code.
The president, the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB), Mrs. Bola Onigbogi, had expressed dissatisfaction that despite the existence of the compulsory insurance act, some motorists have decided to patronise fake insurers, making the industry to lose billions of naira yearly.