THE Ghana Insurance Assocaition (GIA) has dismissed the public perception that the insurance industry does not like paying claims.
The President of the assocition, Seth Kobla Aklasi, speaking at the launch of the Insurance Awareness Month, said this perception was not factual as available data say otherwise.
A report by the National Insurance Commission (NIC) indicates that the insurance industry pays about GHȼ4.2 million in claims or benefits to policy holders on a daily basis.
This translates to about GHȼ 21 million per week, GHȼ 84 million per month and about GHȼ1.1 billion annually.
Mr Aklasi, said these figures pointed to the fact that the perception that insurance companies did not like paying claims was not factual.
“Considering the amount of money the industry pays as claims, it is obvious the industry has not been able to tell its story well enough for Ghanaians to have confidence in us,” he stated.
He said it was for this reason that the association had partnered the Graphic Business to relaunch the Insurance Awareness Month after a seven-year break.
“For Ghanaians to make insurance their way of life, awareness creation remains the missing link and it is for this reason that the board has prioritised awareness as a pivot for increasing uptake, coverage and ultimately, penetration.
This launch signifies our resolve to break the glass ceiling and make Ghanaians aware of insurance and have confidence and trust,” he stated.
Relaunch of Insurance Awareness Month
The 2022 Insurance Awareness Month is on the theme: “Making Insurance the Ghanaian way of life.’
Activities lined up for the month-long celebration includes a public seminar on annuities, public education on road safety, donations to some selected institutions, and a special pull-out supplement on the insurance industry which will be published in the Graphic Business pages in the Daily Graphic on June 22.
Mr Aklasi said the theme for this year’s celebration was chosen in line with the current challenge of the industry.
“We could not have chosen a better theme, judging from the challenges we face in our quest for a positive perception of the industry and the services we render,” he stated.
He said the partnership with the Graphic Business was significant because the Graphic Communications Group Limited (GCGL) was a brand worth associating with.
“We are all aware the Graphic Group reports nothing but the truth and accuracy every day and I am convinced that they will help dispel some of the misconceptions about our industry,” he said.
Vital role of insurance
The GIA President pointed out that the Ghanaian insurance industry played a vital role in the socio economic development of the country, noting that the industry provides the oil for the engine for growth.
“It is often said that the private sector is the engine of growth of the country. I wish to add that the insurance industry provides the oil for that engine to run smoothly and there is no better evidence than the significant risk taken on by insurance and re-insurance companies that allow for the optimum functioning of businesses in this country,” he stated.
He said it was worth noting that the insurance industry paid claims in excess of GHȼ330 million as a result of the June 3, 2015 floods.
The Head of Reinsurance and Anti-Money Laundering at the NIC, Esther Armah, who represented the Commissioner of Insurance, also commended the GIA and Graphic Business for the collaboration to deepen insurance awareness.
She said the insurance industry provided an invaluable service that seemed to require some repackaging to become the way of life for Ghanaians.
“As we strive to become, I want to draw our attention to some areas of our operations, namely product offer, claims payment and customer service.
“A lot of people buy motor insurance because of the police but this must not be the case. As insurers we need to change this perception so that the average Ghanaian perceives insurance as a service that must be acquired,” she stated.
Dealing with risks
The Director Marketing, Graphic Communications Group Limited, Franklin Sowa, who represented the Managing Director, Ato Afful, also emphasised that insurance played a critical role in the economy by helping businesses deal with risks.
That, he said, was the essence of insurance contributors to the sustainability of businesses when risk struck.
Mr Sowa said insurance firms required adequate financial resources in order to support businesses and absorb the risks they insured.
“Insurance companies, therefore, need a steady stream of funds in the form of premiums coming from a diverse clientele,” he added.
Mr Sowa explained that there was a huge gap to close in bringing a good percentage of Ghanaians under insurance cover aside from those covered by the National Health Insurance Scheme.
He said it was, therefore, the reason why GCGL was contributing to efforts by the NIC and GIA to turn the tide in favour of the insurance industry.