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NAICOM tasks professionals to brace up for new challenges amid pandemic

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The National Insurance Commission of Nigeria (NAICOM), has urged the Chartered Institute of Insurance of Nigeria (CIIN), to prepare for the challenges of marketing new members, through education seminars and examination on how to cope with threats posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Commissioner for Insurance, Sunday Thomas, gave the charge in his remarks during the Investiture of Muftau Oyegunle, as the 50th President of CIIN, in Lagos.

Thomas said: “Suffice it to say that critical times require critical measures, the challenges before the Institute during and post-COVID-19 are enormous; how you do your marketing for new members, how you run your education seminars, where and how you conduct your examinations for prospective members will all be affected by the prevailing circumstance.”

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According to Thomas, a paradigm shift from the usual way of insurance practice has become inevitable, and practitioners must learn to inculcate the new world order brought about by the COVID-19 experience, which has become an imperative rather than an option, as examination for prospective members will all be affected by the prevailing circumstance.

He said more than ever before, the Institute must embrace technology as one of its key drivers for development even as it should be prepared to digitalize its processes, procedures and systems to make its operations seamless and real time.

Thomas explained that there is no gainsaying that training and deliberate exposure members to new technology would also go a long way in reshaping their perspectives even as public perception of insurance business still remains very low largely due to the unacceptable professional conduct of very few members.

He argued that CIIN has a pivotal role to play in rebranding and reshaping the ethical behaviour of members, to ensure that every member is a true representative of the core values the insurance profession stands for.

He reiterated NAICOM’s commitment to the development of insurance across all strata, saying: “It is no longer news that the Commission is committing huge resources to actuarial development in the country in collaboration with the Institute through the College of Insurance and Financial Management.”

Though the entire process has been affected by advent of the COVID-19, let me assure the incoming President and his team that the Commission will continue to collaborate and support the Institute where possible, for the attainment of quality education, training and improved ethical behaviour of practitioners.”

Thomas further explained that the Commission’s concern for specialized regulators’ training prompted the plan to establish the NAICOM Academy, which will not only serve the training need of the Commission, but also those of other regulators in the West African sub region.

“I assure the institute that the academy will not compete but complement the activities of the institute for the benefits of insurance business and insurance profession.”

He used the occasion to congratulate the outgoing CIIN President, Eddie Efekoha for his achievements and wish the incoming president a successful tenure in office as he receives the mantle of leadership of the Institute today.

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