The President, Muhammadu Buhari, has again reaffirmed his confidence in the ability of Nigerian underwriters to excel and be at par with their counterparts globally under the right business environment. Buhari, who made the declaration at the just concluded 47th Africa Insurance Organisation Conference held in Lagos, specifically commended the role played by the underwriters at the peak of COVID-19 crisis. President Buhari, who was elated by the roles played by the operators, had in the past applauded them and recently singled out their contributions to the economy.
While thanking the underwriters for making the country proud by successfully organising the conference, the the President said the discussions held at the conference were germane and critical in helping Nigeria and Africa rebuild. On the industry’s contribution during the fight against COVID-19, he said: “I once again use this opportunity to commend the Nigerian insurance industry for identifying with the government through the provision of life insurance set of packages for frontline medical and paramedical personnel in the course of this fight. Your support and solidarity in these times are highly appreciated,” he said. On the AIO conference, President Buhari, submitted that there was a great future for insurance industry in Africa and urged insurance firms in Nigeria to take advantage of ongoing efforts by the Federal Government to grow non-oil sector of the economy through innovation.
He noted that the insurance sector would play a vital role in the diversification of the economy by bringing “necessary stability, economic sustainability, revenue generation, job creation and financial inclusiveness. “There is a great future for the Insurance industry in Africa. We only need to put the right mechanism in place for it to thrive.
I assure you that this administration has and will continue to support Insurance growth in Nigeria and Africa at large. “I commend the leadership of the AIO for the resilience, foresight and perseverance in ensuring that the African Insurance market strives to meet its expectations in the global market notwithstanding the prevailing challenges.” President Buhari said the theme of the conference, “Rebuilding Africa’s Economy: An Insurance Perspective,” was apt and well thought out to respond to the reality of the moment as many governments try to devise ingenious ways to manage their economy in the aftermath of the COVID-19.
“The pandemic has indeed changed many perspectives that have forced leaders across the globe to think hard for remedies. “I want to assure you that we in Nigeria are doing everything humanly possible to ensure coordinated approach to the pandemic and reaching out to other African leaders on possible best options to fully revive the African economy in which I strongly believe the Insurance industry has a vital role to play,” he added. The president noted that COVID- 19 presented a global challenge which led to lockdown of many countries, travel restrictions, and issuance of many health protocols, affecting all human, social and economic interactions that made hosting of the conference impossible in 2020. “COVID-19 is still a serious challenge in many countries across the globe. However, adequate protocols have been put in place to curb its spread and vaccination is in progress.
“We understand as a government and nation the need to frontally tackle some of the disruptions to our social, economic and health occasioned by the pandemic by putting in place sufficient measures that allow the system to function. “We are aware that the AIO’s Conference and Annual General Meeting is rotated amongst member states in order to provide a forum for exchange of information and strategies on market development while promoting regional knowledge and integration. President Buhari said the Federal Government received the news of the decision of the Executive Committee of the AIO granting Nigeria the hosting rights of this 47th edition of the AIO Conference with pleasure, adding that as a country, Nigeria is ever grateful for the opportunity. The Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, while speaking at the closing ceremony of the conference, applauded the operators for putting the country at the spotlights and charged them work towards having homegrown international insurance conglomerates.