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How to proactively plan against civil unrests

This month last year, the socio-economic activities in Nigeria were grounded by youths protesting Police brutality. The peaceful events quickly degenerated into full-blown civil unrest and riots as groups of deviants took over the protest to unleash mayhem on lives, properties, and businesses.

The sudden outcome shook the nation’s business cycle, especially small businesses, whose stores were broken into and completely looted, losing millions of Naira in the devastation. As expected, this surprising outcome caught many unawares. Many businesses were unable to recover from the enormous financial losses.

A report by SBM Intelligence, a security and socio-economic research group, stated that 43% of the micro and small businesses surveyed said they lost more than N1 million, 29% lost between N500,000 to N1 million, 14% lost between 150,000 and N500,000, while 14% lost less than N150,000″.

In December 2020, a couple of months after the riots, Punch Newspaper, one of Nigeria’s leading newspapers, reported that a “total of 1,036 individuals and corporates that reported losses during the #EndSARS protests across the country had lodged claims through 14 insurance companies.”

On March 4, 2021, the newspapers reported that “twenty-five insurance companies have recorded claims totalling N20.4bn from losses that emanated from the #EndSARS protests”.

For businesses not covered by insurance coverage, how can they prepare for this kind of episode? In this edition of “Insuring Happiness”, we highlight three crucial factors to consider in proactively planning towards civil unrest:

1. Understand that civil unrest is a global issue

Firstly, understand that civil unrest is not just an African or a Nigerian occurrence. It is a global issue. According to the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace – Global Protest Tracker, over 230 significant anti-government protests erupted worldwide, and more than 110 countries have experienced significant rallies in the last four years. Global leading economies such as United States, United Kingdom, China etc., have experienced their fair share of violent protests. In fact, peaceful or violent protests may be inevitable where the population of young, boisterous minds and activists exist. Nigeria’s population comprises 65% of young people under 35 years, making such events more likely, hence the need to include this in your risk management for your business.

Read also: #EndSARS: Delta to pay N102m to victims of police brutality

2. Take precaution if you are in proximity to high- risks zones

It is important to prioritise proactive risk management if you are domiciled in high-risk zones such as government institutions, tertiary institutions, entertainment zones, sports facilities, key convergence centres (such as bus stops, car parks etc.). These zones will most likely be the first red zones for mayhems, riots, and vandalism by aggrieved or excited youths. If you have a business or home is in these areas, it is advisable to take extra caution.

3. Have a financial backup plan

This is where insurance comes in. With an insurance policy in place, you procure an assurance of compensation should the worse event happen. If your business or personal assets get damaged, having an insurance cover to rely on is essential to help you return to the status quo. Unfortunately, businesses with no insurance cover may never upturn the losses incurred.

One of the financial risk management tools put in place by Leadway Assurance is L-Boss; this policy is dubbed the “perfect assistant to every entrepreneur”. With the growing risk level for small businesses operating in Nigeria, as evidenced by the economic recessions, civil unrests, pandemic, insecurity issues, and lockdowns that halted business operations, a solution is needed. Entrepreneurs must become Master of Risk identification, risk mitigation and risk management by having a comprehensive business cover to cushion sudden financial losses. This comprehensive policy brings the businesses multiple assets – including content in your premises such as vehicles, computers, stock items belonging to customers, and employees under one cover.

This policy is specially designed to help small and medium-sized businesses glide in a storm. With a default cover period of one year, the policy offers flexible premium payment options of either monthly, quarterly, or semi-annually to help business owners with cash flow issues enjoy the provision of this cover. This policy affords the entrepreneur the rest of mind needed to run the business, assured that should uncertainties and unforeseen circumstances arise, there is a perfect assistant ready to walk with you towards the journey of recovery and rebuilding.

To know how you can get this policy, please visit https://www.leadway.com/l-boss/ or call the Leadway Assurance customer care helpline on 01-2800-700. You can also send an email to Lcs@leadway.com for professional advisory or request a call back by visiting www.leadway.com/call-me.

We are within your reach on WhatsApp via our virtual assistant support on 08129997044 or any of our social media outlets – @LeadwayAssurance on Facebook & Instagram, @Leadwayinsure on Twitter. You can also send a DM, and we will revert with all the information you require.

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