The Nigerian Council of Registered Insurance Brokers (NCRIB) says no insurance company has claimed a relationship with the collapsed 21-storey building in Ikoyi.
Tope Daramola, NCRIB’s Executive Secretary, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the sidelines of the NCRIB Special Day at the 2021 Lagos International Trade Fair (LITF) in Lagos.
Daramola said despite the huge loss of lives and resources recorded at the building site, no underwriter had owned up to the incident.
“The fatal loss recorded from the incident is unfortunate, but as at today, no underwriter or broker has claimed any relationship with the collapsed building,” he said.
“The implication of this is a total loss for everyone involved, and sadly for those who lost their lives, if no insurer eventually shows up to take up the claims.”
According to him, the government must ensure that insurance is treated with utmost importance. Also, he said that the legislature should mandate insurance on storey buildings as the compulsory motor insurance policy and enforce it with the law enforcement agencies.
Daramola also noted that such legislation would result in higher returns for the industry, as insurance operators would increase their capacity to employ more labour, thereby reducing unemployment, social problems and also contributing to the GDP.
He also urged Nigerians to prioritise insurance by securing their valuables.
Speaking about the NCRIB day, Daramola said the initiative of the council to collaborate with the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) was birthed out of the desire to deepen insurance penetration in Nigeria.
He explained that the trade fair engagement was a trailblazer, as it was the first time the industry, under the umbrella of the NCRIB, was collaborating with LCCI.
“The challenge of insurance in Nigeria is not that of capacity building or technical know-how but that of acceptance by Nigerians,” he said.
“Less than 10 percent of Nigerians as we speak know anything about insurance, and out of 10 per cent, you have less than two percent subscribing to insurance.
“This is a contrast to what you have in other climes, especially in advanced countries where everything you breathe, eat or live is insurance.”
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According to him, the collaboration with LCCI will further enlighten Nigerians, especially the industry players.
Meanwhile, a picture taken before the collapse of the 21-storey building located in Gerrard road, Ikoyi, Lagos have emerged.
The structure, which was being developed by Fourscore Homes, caved in on Monday, November 1, killing over 40 persons.
The photo, taken a few days before the incident, showed the building still standing — but evidently tilted.
The picture was taken by a resident of the area who expressed fears that the building might collapse.
Femi Osibona, owner of Fourscore Homes, is one of the 45 persons who have so far been confirmed dead.
In the wake of the incident, Obafemi Hamzat, deputy governor of Lagos state, had said construction at the collapsed building was once stopped after it failed a structural integrity test.
The deputy governor said the building was sealed “because our agency came in to do structural tests and saw some anomalies”.
Subsequently, a video surfaced online showing how Osibona, aided by security operatives, resisted the sealing off of the property.
In the two-minute video clip, dated 2020, a group of men, who appeared to be officials of the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA), insisted on sealing off the building — but they were repelled.
On Wednesday, Gbenga Omotoso, Lagos commissioner for information and strategy, said the state has not ordered the demolition of the remaining two structures.
The commissioner said an integrity test is yet to be conducted on the two buildings.
“The panel of inquiry instituted into the collapse of the building has continued to sit, and an integrity test is yet to be conducted on the two buildings. It is, therefore, wrong to assert or speculate that the buildings will be demolished,” he said.
Also, the senate has asked the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to provide support to survivors of the building collapse.