Despite the benefits of motor insurance cover, the Nigerian Insurance Association says over 12 million Nigerian motorists carry fake insurance papers.
Investigations by stakeholders in the sector revealed that many motorists prefer patronizing fraudsters for insurance papers rather than obtaining a valid certificate that would provide cover and compensation in times of accident.
Nigerian Insurance Association boss, Mr. Sunday Thomas who spoke to reporters in Asaba, at the weekend said that the development had not gone down well with operators in the industry who have decided to collaborate with law enforcement agencies to put an end to fake insurance business in Nigeria.
He said that the industry had continued to record increase in the number of genuine insurance policies registered in its Nigerian industry database, adding that “the vehicles on the Nigerian roads are between 16 million and 17 million but what we have registered in our database is about 4.3 million, it is possible that insurance coverage of some expired and have not been renewed.’’
Noting that the association was trying to separate the expired policies from the current ones to determine the actual number of vehicles with genuine insurance, Thomas explained that the industry data base was introduced to curb the proliferation of fake motor insurance papers, provide information on the details of vehicle on the Nigerian roads as well as enhance the verification of certificates in owners’ possession.
He said from available statistics on the number of motorists that are using fake insurance papers, it was obvious that many motorists are unaware of the position of the law on defaulters,.
He said section 68 of the Insurance Act 2003 states that “ no person shall use or cause any other person to use a motor vehicle on the road, unless a liability which he may thereby incur in respect of the damage to the property of third parties is insured with an insurer registered under its act, the insurance states that the law shall cover the liability of not less than one million and that a person that contravenes the provisions of that section of the law commits an offence and will be liable on conviction to a fine of N250,000 or imprisoned for one year.”