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Ensure prompt payment of compensation to victims — Practitioners urged

THE Chairman of the Council of Bureaux of the ECOWAS Brown Card Insurance Scheme, Henry Bukari, has advised practitioners and handlers of motor insurance claims to speed up processes of paying compensation to victims under the ECOWAS Brown Card scheme.

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He bemoaned the situation where some National Bureaux operators and handlers delayed in paying compensation to victims, warning that everyone was a potential accident victim.

“Everyone is a potential accident victim anywhere so you need to put yourselves in the shoes of the victims who find themselves in other countries other than their countries of origin within the ECOWAS sub-region,” he stated.

Mr Bukari was speaking at the ongoing zonal meeting of the ECOWAS Brown Card Insurance Scheme in Conakry, Guinea.

The meeting seeks to bring together stakeholders from ECOWAS countries to exchange ideas, share good practices and explore new opportunities for cooperation. 

The aim is to overcome obstacles to free movement in order to promote the sustainable development of West African states.

The ECOWAS Brown Card Insurance Scheme is an extension of the "motor insurance cover" to promote the free movement of people and their goods in the ECOWAS region, through rapid and fair compensation for cross-border claims.

Mr Bukari said the main objective of the Conakry meeting was to revise the technical texts relating to the ECOWAS Brown Card Insurance Scheme, particularly those concerning the settlement of cross-border claims. 

“Our basic claims settlement text is largely influenced by the CIMA Code. And in view of recent developments over the past decade, it was important to revise it in the light of developments in other sub-regional systems.” 

“After this review, we are confident that the population will be better covered and that we will achieve a speedy settlement of accident victims in the sub-region,” he stated.

Relevant recommendations 

At the meeting, the Second Vice-Governor of the Central Bank of the Republic of Guinea, Souadou Baldé, said: “I hope that during this period, your exchanges and sharing of experiences will lead to relevant recommendations and useful resolutions to achieve our objectives.”

She said the Central Bank of the Republic of Guinea, as the insurance supervisory authority, undertakes to implement the measures and resolutions resulting from the meetings. 

“I am confident that each jurisdiction present here will also take the necessary steps to make the settlement of cross-border claims in the sub-region effective,” she said.

About meeting 

This first meeting brought together more than 90 participants from the West African countries excluding Cape Verde which is an island country. 

Key participants in the meeting included Mr Winfred Kwesi Dodzi, Secretary-General of the permanent Secretariat of the Scheme, Mr Benjamin Yamoah, Chairman of the Ghana National Bureau, Mr Richard Eshun, General Secretary of the Ghana National Bureau, Mr Patrick Agyekum, immediate past General Secretary of the GNB and Mr Dicoh Balamine, also the immediate past General Secretary of the Cote D’Ivoire National Bureau.

Also present were Mr Albert Siaw-Boateng, Director of Free Movement of the ECOWAS Commission, and Ambassador Ali Bangura. 

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