SPEECH DELIVERED BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE NIGERIAN COUNCIL OF REGISTERED INSURANCE BROKERS, MR. KAYODE OKUNOREN, FIIN, FCIB AT THE APRIL 2016 EDITION OF NCRIB MEMBERS’ EVENING HELD ON TUESDAY, APRIL 26, 2016 IN LAGOS
Management team of Zenith General Insurance Company Limited
Distinguished members of the NCRIB Governing Board
Our guests here present
Gentlemen of the Press
Ladies and Gentlemen
I am most delighted to welcome you all to the April edition of NCRIB Member’s Evening which is being hosted by Zenith General Insurance Company Limited. I like to put on record that your overwhelming attendance at the Council’s functions since I became the President is an encouragement for me personally, as it further depicts that this administration has your support, in spite of many challenges confronting our members in recent times. I am most delighted that your support, suggestions and encouragements have assisted us to navigate all the odds on our path. I use this medium to appeal to colleagues, who are still maintaining apathy towards Council’s activities to have a change of heart as we can only survive through constant bonding and exchange of ideas on a continual basis. It is noteworthy that one of the legacies of our past leaders is the bi-monthly Members’ Evening which, has continued to be a veritable platform for interaction between insurance brokers and leading underwriters in the market. It is my pleasure to inform you that Underwriters now jostle to host the Evening; even companies outside our industry are willing to proudly identify with us by sponsoring this Evening. It therefore behooves us to complement the evening with our continuous attendance as this would help its sustenance. I like to remind you that you have a lot to gain with your presence at this event.
It is my honour to specially welcome the Management team of Zenith General Insurance Company Limited ably led here today by its Managing Director/CEO, Mr. Ebelechukwu Nwachukwu. Your desire to host this Members’ Evening has further underscored the fact that Zenith General Insurance Company Limited is really Brokers’ Friendly. I can only assure you that going forward; your business would never remain the same. Shortly, you would be called upon to address this auspicious gathering.
Obviously, this is not the best of times for many Nigerians in view of the economic recession being experienced today. Obviously, our economy is presently bedeviled by challenges such as unfavourable exchange rate of the naira against the US Dollars; spiraling cost of goods and services that has constituted a hole in the pockets of Nigerians. The rock bottom prices of our crude oil in the international market coupled with the gale of corruption manifesting in the mismanagement of the nation’s resources has worsened the plight of the country. It is definitely natural that a time like this would ordinarily task the patience of the citizens just as we are already seeing at the moment. However, the take of the Council is that there is need at this period for Nigerians to have more patience and cooperate with the present administration in ensuring the revival of our national economy. Realising that no one could proverbially eat an omelette without breaking an egg; Nigerians need to endure the temporary hardship for a better tomorrow. Whilst the citizens are enduring and sacrificing, the onus is also on the leaders to lead by example and ensure their lifestyle conforms to what they preach in order to get the desire support of the followers. Similarly, the appeal has to go to government to immediately commence the implementation of the 2016 National Budget which would definitely succor Nigerians. It is disheartening that up till now, at the expiration of the fourth month of the year, government has not started the implementation of the budget.
300 NAICOM LIST:
Recently, the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) commenced the publication of Brokers list that had satisfied the renewal requirements as at the date of the publication in line with the Commission’s practice. But unfortunately, rumour had made the rounds that only the 300 Brokers on the list as at the first publication were the only licensed operators in the market, sending misleading signals to the insuring public. This information is quite erroneous as number has increased to about 314 members as at today. Suffice it to note that it is the statutory responsibility of NAICOM to make public the list of practitioners who have satisfied their renewal requirement as they are cleared by the Commission. The list will keep coming in batches as not all Brokers have the same renewal dates and that explains the differentiation in the period of the approval of their licenses by the Commission.
I like to enjoin my professional colleagues who have not satisfied the renewal requirements to do so as soon as possible to avoid the penalty from the regulatory body. I’m glad to inform you that NCRIB and NAICOM had continued to forge effective collaboration in the area of statutory registration.
I am most delighted to inform you that all is set for Chief Executive Officers Retreat of the Council holding in Ilesha, in Osun State. The CEOs’ Retreat, as the name implies, is a yearly platform whereby Insurance Broking top notch come together for the purposes of re-strategising, fraternizing and sharpening their professional skills. The Retreat has attained the reputation of tickling the excitement and expectations of the participants. The Retreat, tagged Osun 2016, is scheduled to hold between Wednesday, 1st and Friday 3rd, June 2016 and will be featuring a pleasantly stimulating and exciting theme entitled “Growing Insurance Amidst Regulations”. You will agree with me that the choice of the theme is timely considering our common business environment. I believe that these three day event would definitely re-sharpen your business skill and put your company in higher pedestal of profitability and growth. Any firm that would succeed at this period, undoubtedly, must embrace logical strategies and continually learn the dynamics of growing business. This is the fulcrum of the 2016 CEOs’ Retreat. Happily, Dr. Mohammad Ahmad, the pioneer Director General of National Pension Commission (PenCom) has graciously accepted to do justice to the theme paper. You can’t be bored listening to him!
Similarly, a motivational lecture on “Managing Effective Meetings” has been penciled down alongside the theme paper. Employees and customers retention in a moment like this is critical to business sustenance. The second paper has being designed to address some basic and soft skills that may ruin individual reputation or corporate success. A seasoned speaker with wide experience has been contacted to deliver the paper. He is Mr. Oyedokun Oyetunji, a versatile lawyer, HR guru and frontline Industrial Arbitrator. Also, there would be lots of fun to catch at the Asun cum Social Night as well as the Novelty Match where I am opting to be the main striker of my side! My team is seriously itching to defeat any unfortunate opponent that would confront us!
NCRIB PUBLICATION OF ELIGIBLE MEMBERS:
One of our statutory responsibilities every year is to publish the names of all eligible members of the Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers in National Dailies. I like to inform you that it is about the time for the Council to carry out this statutory obligation. Leveraging on past experiences, Brokers that failed to meet up with the requirements for the publication, often face lots of challenges in business due to the attendant negative image that non inclusion attracts. I therefore urge you to regularize your memberships with the Secretariat, pay your subscription to merit the list. Delay is dangerous!
2016 INTERNATIONAL TRIP:
The year 2016 International Trip will hold from Sunday, 11 June – Saturday 18 June, 2016 in Barcelona, Spain. The International trip which is being facilitated by LIMRA promised to be enriching and delightful. Aside from the stimulating world class lectures, LIMRA would also facilitate memorable visits for delegates. It is my hope that many members would opt to attend this important trip
Similarly, the 43rd Conference and Annual General Assembly of the African Insurance Organisation will take place at Palaise de Congress in Marrakech, Morocco from the Sunday 8th to Wednesday 11th May, 2016. You are all encouraged to attend.
DEMISE OF CHIEF ODUTOLA BALOGUN:
It is with heavy heart that we bemoan the exit of one of our pioneer member and foremost insurance practitioner, Late Odutola Tunde Balogun who died recently at a prime age of 94. The death of Chief Odutola is a great loss to the Council, as the gap he left behind with take a very long time. Permit me to note that Late Balogun would be remembered as one of the earliest insurance professionals who infused a great deal of integrity and professionalism into the nation’s insurance broking practice. In his lifetime, Late Balogun was one of the prides of the insurance profession, having co-founded Equity Indemnity Insurance Limited which morphed later into Equity Assurance plc. He was also the Chairman of Intra Niger Insurance Brokers Limited, which he founded in 1964. With the demise of the insurance icon, another chapter has been closed in the history of insurance profession in Nigeria. I like to urge every upcoming practitioner to emulate the goodly virtue which the deceased left on the sands of time. May the good Lord grant the departed soul repose.
I must not end my speech without reiterating my expression of thanks to our host-Zenith General. You have demonstrated good spirit of comradeship and partnership with the Council and I have no reservation in announcing your company a Broker Friendly Underwriter that is worth patronizing by our members. May the sun of this great company never grow less.
Once again I thank you all for listen as I wish you a delightful Evening.