Pension

Isire, Yusuf call for retooling of Nigeria’s economy, proper review of PRA 2014

from left: Mrs. Nneka Obiamalu, Director, Pensioners Support Services Dept, PTAD; Mr Rasaaq Salami, Head, Commissioner for Insurance Directorate, NAICOM; Dr. Muda Yusuf, Director General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI)/keynote speaker, and Mr. Austin Enajemo-Isire, Chairman, Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF)/Chairman of the occasion, at the 5th NAIPCO national Conference, on Bankable Investments Portfolio For Insurance, Pension Sectors in Lagos Wednesday,4th of November, 2020

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Chuks Udo Okonta

The Chairman, Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, (NSITF), Austin Enajemo-Isire, said there is urgent need to consider alternative strategies to retool the economy for survival and growth even as he called for the review of the Pension Reform Act (PRA) to enable those in Real sectors of the economy have access to Insurance and Pension fund to finance their operations.

Enajemo-Isere, made the call while speaking at the 5th National Conference of the National Association of Insurance and Pension Correspondents (NAIPCO), themed: “Promoting Bankable Investments Portfolio for Insurance and Pension Sectors, in Lagos today, as the Chairman of the occasion.

NSITF boss who identified the effect of the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic and wanton destruction of life and properties across the country caused by the ‘#EndSARS Mayhem, among many others on the economy, noted that the impact of these crisis have resulted into the Nation GDP declining from a growth of 2.2 per cent in 2019 to about -4 per cent by year end.

He said as a result of this, the Government, Private sector Institutions and individuals have continued to search for economic survival strategies to change the narratives and create new normal.

Mr Austin Enajemo-Isere advocated for a deliberate policy by the authorities, in addition to what is currently obtainable, directly or through moral suasion to invest Insurance and Pension Fund in sectors such as Manufacturing, Agriculture and Aviation, etc with an inbuilt safety net.

“In furtherance to the foregoing, the current restrictive nature of insurance and Pension Funds investment outlets calls for review of the legislations guiding investment of Insurance and Pension Fund. The yelling and plea from the Organised Private sector of Nigeria (OPSN) to create more access to investible FUNDS deserves attention.

“It is worthy to note and be reminded that Insurance and Pension funds are subject to regulatory guidelines as provided in section 25 of the Insurance Act 2003 as amended and Sect 86 of the PRA 2014, for the purpose of safety and Returns.

“However, a consideration for review of these legislations to enable some special and Real sectors of the economy have access to Insurance and Pension fund to finance their operations, will be most beneficial to the growth and development of the Nation’s Macroeconomic activities. A deliberate policy by the authorities, in addition to what is currently obtainable, directly or through moral suasion to invest Insurance and Pension Fund in sectors such as Manufacturing, Agriculture and Aviation, etc with an inbuilt safety net, will be a welcome development,” he suggested.

NSTIF boss who stressed the important role of insurance as a catalyst to Nation building and risk transfer mechanism, commended underwriters for rising to their responsibility, noting that “some operators, in recent times have given assurances to the insuring public that reported claims emanating from the EndSARS protest, among others, will be promptly honored, particularly policies with extension that cover Strike, Riot and Civil Commotions (SRCC). This is cheering news for the Industry and the Nation in general.”

Director-General, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) Dr. Muda Yusuf, who delivered the keynote paper entitled: Promoting Bankable Investments Portfolio For Insurance, Pension Sectors, said the economy would do well when government at all levels enact and sustain policies that are targeted at raising the wellbeing of the citizenry.

He called on the government to always carry the public along in the formation and implementation of its policies, stressing that non adherence to policies has remained the bane for poor growth and development of many organisations in the country.

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