By Loveth Azodo
The lingering problem of not insuring federal government’s assets and the associated loss of government properties without repair or replacement may not have come to an end as managers of federal government Ministries, Departments and Agencies( MDAs) bluntly frustrates move by the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) to secure insurance covers for the assets by advising them to set up insurance desks manned by insurance experts in their various offices.
NAICOM, which is federal government adviser on insurance matters had precisely on October 28,2015, advised the MDAs to set up insurance desks headed by insurance professionals to handle insurances of their assets.
The Commissioner for Insurance, Alhaji Mohammed Kari, had advised MDAs to ensure compliance with the provisions of the extant laws in all their insurance activities.
It is now two years since NAICOM gave the advise but virtually all government assets are still without insurance cover while many agencies of government refused to set up insurance desks.
Rather than making efforts in this direction, OptimumTimes enquiries reveal that heads of MDAs petitioned ministry of finance on the need for NAICOM to stop intruding into their affairs.
It was also learnt that the heads of MDAs had warned NAICOM to mind its business and leave them alone.
Meanwhile, year in year out, only about 10 percent of federal government budget voted for insurance is spent but what is not clear is how the rest of the fund voted for insurance is spent yearly.
This is so even as many government’s assets damaged by fire, flood and other destructive means have remained in dilapidated condition as nobody has asked why the damaged assets were not replaced or fixed .
Meanwhile, insurance experts, economists and business administrators have advised that if there is any time anybody in the country needs insurance, it is now that the economy just sneaked out of recession and all hands are on deck to see how to recover what was lost during the recession.
According to them, at this critical time, what government, individuals, businesses need to do to remain afloat is to preserve assets they have acquired during the economic boom.
Against the backdrop of government’s nonchalant attitude towards insurance, insurance managers have often accused government of paying lip service to the industry.
OptimumTimes notes that for three consecutive years, federal government has failed to pay group life insurance premium for its workers . This is despite the prevailing ‘no premium no cover’ regime in the industry.