NIC Verses Swaytel Insurance Company Limited (an unlicenced Company)

NIC Verses Swaytel Insurance Company Limited (an unlicenced Company)

As we are all aware, the world is facing a major health crisis in the form of coronavirus (COVID-19). Following the address of His Excellency the President to the nation on same, the Commission hereby wishes to draw your attention to the need to take urgent steps to protect your staff and customers.

In addition to the measures announced by the President, we wish to recommend the following;

  1. Encourage staff to avoid crowded places. Staff who take public transport to and from work should be assisted to take appropriate precaution to minimise the risk of infection.
  2. Encourage and permit non-essential staff to take some leave. Also, those whose work schedule/nature makes it possible for them to work from home should be encouraged to do so to reduce the number of people in your offices at any particular time.
  3. It is strongly recommended that all planned conferences, seminars and workshops be put on hold until further notice.
  4. Chief Executives Officers and other senior staff are advised to minimise the use of drivers. As much as possible, they are advised to drive their vehicles to minimise the risk of infection.
  5. Ensure that critical and front-line staff are provided with appropriate protective resources like gloves and sanitizers and trained to adopt appropriate strategies to minimise the risk of infection.
  6. Ensure that all offices, including branch and agency offices, underwriting and claims halls are sanitized on a regular basis. Also provide hand sanitizing dispensers at entry and vantage points.

We count on your cooperation to protect the health and lives of the staff and customers of the insurance industry.

The National Insurance Commission (NIC) has recorded over 78,000 newly insured vehicles as of February 17, since it implemented the Motor Insurance Database (MID).

The Commissioner of Insurance, Justice Yaw Ofori, disclosed this Monday, February 17, at a meeting with the Greater Accra Regional Executives of the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU) of the Trades Unions Congress (TUC), paid a courtesy call on the management of the NIC, the regulator of insurance entities in Ghana.

The MID was implemented on January 1, 2020, and is providing a centralised system from which security agencies and the general public including passengers of vehicles can check the validity of vehicle insurance instantaneously.

The checks can be done through the use of a mobile phone, receipt of acknowledgement of transaction via a text message or by scanning a QR code on the insurance sticker by the Police MTTD.

Moved by their excitement at the new development, the GPRTU leaders lauded the NIC for its bold initiative and thought it had been long overdue.

The delegation, led by its Chairman, Mr Emmanuel Nii Ankrah, nonetheless expressed their concerns regarding their assumption that the premium rates have been increased particularly those being charged on 2020 registered vehicles.

The Commissioner of Insurance on his part, explained that premiums had not been increased but because insurance companies are now complying and charging the rightly regulated premiums on particularly the 2020 registered vehicles through the database effective January 1, 2020.

Mr Ofori bemoaned the situation when, in the past, some insurance companies were undervaluing vehicles and competed on prices rather than on service thus making it quite challenging for some of them to pay genuine claims promptly.

“Huge claims arising out of fatal accidents involving commercial vehicles had been a major headache for many insurance companies as they were not liquid enough to honour claims promptly resulting from the lower-than-regulated premiums they had charged in the past,” the Commissioner cited these as some of the reasons some members of the insuring public do not have confidence in insurance companies.

He, however, stated that with the MID, it is expected that insurance Companies will be in a better position to pay genuine claims promptly to the utmost protection of policyholders and innocent third parties.

The delegation expressed their delight at the move as it has been the challenge of the leadership of the GPRTU when their members fall victim to the menace fake insurance stickers. They lamented the situation where some of their unsuspecting member drivers were cowed into purchasing cheap motor insurance with stickers which looked exactly like the originals. The reality dawned on these drivers only after they were involved in accidents that warranted a claim which was repudiated by the Insurance Companies they were purported to have insurance cover with.

Mr Justice Ofori expressed his appreciation to the leadership, not just for their cooperation at the new development in the Insurance sector but also saw it as an issue of national importance and had embraced the initiative that would help sustain the livelihoods of families of accident victims economically.

Mr Ofori also hinted to the delegation that the NIC has since launched a nationwide training of Personnel of the Police Motor Traffic and Transport Division (MTTD) to enable a smooth enforcement of the database.

The Executives having received a conviction after having obtained these clarifications pledged their support to the Commission by way of educating their members so as not to fall prey to dealers of fake insurance and requested copies of the actual regulated premiums rates which they were provided.

The leaders of the driver union used the opportunity to intimate their plans of rolling out an educational campaign to their members to which the Commission had no objection with the Management pledging their unflinching support to one of its biggest stakeholders – the GPRTU.

The National Insurance Commission (NIC) which is the Regulatory and Supervisory Body of the Insurance services sector with a broad consumer and prudential regulatory mandate under Section 2(3) of the Insurance Act 2006, (Act 724) wishes to bring to the notice of the general public that it has commenced the implementation of the Motor Insurance Database (MID), effective 1st January 2020.

The objective of the introduction of the Motor Insurance Database (MID) is to curb the menace of vehicles with fake motor insurance stickers plying our roads, thus endangering lives and property.

Click on the link below to download the press release on the implementation of the Motor Insurance Database (MID)

Press Release: Implementation of the Motor Insurance Database (MID)

The Inspector-General of Police (IGP) has commended the National Insurance Commission (NIC) on its bold implementation of the Motor Insurance Database (MID). The objective of the MID is to curb the phenomenon of vehicles with fake motor insurance stickers plying our roads, thus endangering lives and property. He made these is remarks when the top Management of the NIC led by the Commissioner of Insurance, Mr. Justice Yaw Ofori paid a courtesy call on him at the Police Headquarters. Also present at the meeting was the Director-General of the Motor Traffic & Transport Division (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service, COP Mrs. Beatrice Vib-Sanziri.

In his remarks, the IGP stated that this initiative was long overdue and could not have come at a better time. He bemoaned the carnage on our roads being recorded at such alarming rate barely a few days into the new year as worrisome. IGP Oppong-Boanuh further called on the NIC to expedite action on the training of the Officers, Police Officers of the MTTD on the MID across the Country for a more effective and successful implementation.

In his remarks, the Commissioner of Insurance, Mr Justice Ofori commended the Police for being a key stakeholder in the motor insurance space as regards enforcement without which the industry would have suffered a huge setback. Mr Ofori assured the IGP and for that matter the Police Service of the insurance Industry’s unrelenting support towards an enhanced collaboration.

“The NIC will collaborate with the MTTD as they conduct random checks across the lengths and breadths of the country to rid our roads of uninsured vehicles with fake insurance stickers”, the Commissioner intimated.

It is instructive to note that the number of uninsured vehicles on our roads are not easily detectable by the Police and this has caused many lives and property – a situation that warranted the development and ultimate implementation of this database.
It is expected that this will provide the much needed vehicle for increased insurance penetration in the country; thus, contributing to real economic growth.

It would be recalled that the Vice-President of the Republic of Ghana, His Excellency Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia made a formal declaration on this all-important digital database in December 2019 and its swift implementation by the NIC is a demonstration of the Regulator’s resolve to ensure consumer protection and prudent solvency of the insurance sector as stipulated in the Article 2 (3) of the Insurance Act 2006 (Act 724) and plugging the loopholes couldn’t have been this timely.
Present at the meeting were other top Officials of the Ghana Police Service and the NIC.

The leadership of transport unions has endorsed the initiative by the insurance regulator to implement an electronic insurance database, to check the menace of fake insurance stickers.

The Driver Unions who were moved by their excitement at the news, recently paid a courtesy call on the Commissioner of Insurance at the National Insurance Commission, to find out more about it.

The Union Executives led by Mr Francis Sallah expressed their delight at the move as it has been the headache of the national leadership of the General Transport, Petroleum and Chemical Workers Union (GTPCWU) of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) when their members fall victim to this menace due to fake insurance stickers.
He bemoaned the situation where some of their unsuspecting drivers were cowed into purchasing cheap motor insurance with stickers which looked exactly like the originals.

Reality dawned on these drivers only after they were involved in accidents that warranted a claim which was refused to be honored by the Insurance Companies they were purported to have insurance cover with.
In his response, the Commissioner of Insurance and the Chief Executive Officer of the NIC, Justice Ofori, expressed his appreciation to the leadership of the GTPCWU (TUC), (which is a key stakeholder in the motor insurance space) for such endorsement and saw it as a national embrace of a policy that would help everyone including ensuring the livelihoods of families of accident victims are not curtailed.

The Motor Insurance Database which would be implemented in the first quarter of 2020 will provide a centralized database from which security agencies and the general public including passengers of commercial vehicles can check the validity of an insured vehicle on the spot.
The checks may be done through either a mobile app, a text message or by scanning a code on the insurance sticker. He also stated that the NIC is collaborating with the Driver And Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) and the Police Motor Transport Traffic Department (MTTD) to enable a smooth rolling out of the programme.

In an earlier interview with some victims of fake insurance and non-insurance, Ms Doreen Dodoo, a Teacher shared her experience on how the nation should embrace this move by the NIC that would inure to the benefit of all.
According to her, she was due to renew her motor insurance policy after a year of cover only to be told by the insurance company that she had no cover the previous year.

Upon investigations, it was revealed that indeed she had paid her premium alright but the money was clipped to the counterfoil of her receipt and still lying in the drawers of the Agent who had done the policy for her but failed to have the records of payment updated, she narrated.

“Imagine if anything had happened to me during that period that I was told I didn’t have cover even though I had proof of that. I would have been a victim without any compensation and it is my family that would have been at the receiving end of the consequences of the bad nuts who are perpetrating this menace,” she stated.

Another victim, Mr Christian Bruce also shared his experience and expressed his excitement at the MID policy by the NIC.
According to him, he was ran over by a commercial vehicle and suffered serious head injuries but was told later that the vehicle that knocked him down had fake insurance and for that matter, there was no compensation for him from the insurance company.

He gave his backing to the Motor Insurance Database which he indicated, would make it easy for a motorist to tell at first hand through a mobile phone alert, the moment he or she purchases insurance.
“If this had been in place earlier, I don’t think I would have gone through this hell,” he lamented.

Some driver union leaders and drivers at the 37 and Achimota transport terminals also shared similar experiences and expressed great joy and indicated they cannot wait for this to happen as planned by the NIC as they admonish their colleagues across the country to beware of cheap insurance premiums.

The National Insurance Commission (NIC) has shut down ZETA Insurance Brokers for operating illegally.

According to the commission, the said company has been operating for the past five years in Accra.

Addressing the media on Thursday, the Commissioner of Insurance, Justice Yaw Ofori says the Police are currently investigating the matter.

“We did our investigation based on the hard work of our Special Investigation Unit and those involved have been referred to the Police and I believe the Police have actually started with their investigation and eventually will prosecute them,” he said.

Under the Insurance Act, 2006, Act 724, it is an offence for a company to engage in the business of insurance with an unlicensed intermediary or broker. Mr Ofori says the insurance companies involved have been sanctioned.

He said, “With respect to the insurance companies that were doing business with them, they have been sanctioned and given fines.”

The NIC has therefore advised the general public to desist from engaging the services of ZETA Insurance Brokers for intermediary services as their operation is not recognized by law.

COI-Justice Ofori

The National Insurance Commission (NIC) has allayed fears that the decline in insurance penetration rate will hurt the sector.

According to the Commission’s 2018 report, the sector’s penetration rate dropped from 1.12 per cent to 1% – a situation the NIC attributed to the rebasing of the economy.

Addressing the media at this year’s Ghana Reinsurance Cedant Awards, the Commissioner of Insurance, Justice Yaw Ofori affirmed that the sector has seen the entry of more businesses as compared to previous years.

“Now we have oil and gas and the agricultural sector is also doing well so it doesn’t mean that insurance is not doing well,” he said.

As part of on- going efforts to stabilise, strengthen and enhance the capacity of the financial services sector to support socio-economic development, the National Insurance Commission has revised the Minimum Capital Requirements of all insurance entities.

The mandate of the Commission is to protect the interest of policyholders by ensuring a financially strong Insurance industry. The new MCR is one of the initiatives the Commission is taking to achieve this. The Commission strongly urges Shareholders, Directors and Executives of all Insurance entities to take all proactive steps to meet the new capital requirements by the set date.

Click on the link below to download the New Minimum Capital requirements  for Insurance Entities

New Minimum Capital requirements (MCR) for Insurance Entities

Pursuant to section 21, 45, and 114 of the Insurance Act 2016, Act 724 obligating all Insurers, Reinsurers and Intermediaries to pay for some of the specific services provided by the National Insurance Commission (NIC), the NIC presents the revised schedule of fees. Please note there is going to be annual reviews of fees after this review to reduce the likelihood of large increases in subsequent years.

Revised fees
The fees have been revised due mainly to the fact that:

  • There have been significant increase in the cost of goods and services, since the previous review in 2013.

Click on the link below to download the revised fees, which takes effect from April 1, 2019.

Revised Fees Payable to the NIC

The general public is being informed that the trial of the person accused of operating an unlicensed insurance company, Swaytel Insurance Company Limited, in Swedru has ended.

The accused person, Emmanuel Kwame Adjei, was found guilty and convicted by the court on all seven counts, including operating an unlicenced insurance company, forging of fake Motor Insurance Stickers, and defrauding by false pretense.

The judgment went in favor of the National Insurance Commission (NIC) and the accused person was sentenced to five (5) years in prison or pay a fine of 2,500 penalty units which is equivalent to Thirty Thousand Cedis (GH¢30,000.00).

The prosecution of the case was led by the Special Investigations Unit of the NIC.