• Friday, June 21, 2024
businessday logo


Safety experts want compulsory insurance on buildings in Lagos

The Lagos State Safety Commission and the Nigerian Insurers Association (NIA) on Monday began discussions with stakeholders on the enforcement of compulsory insurance on public buildings in the state.

The director-general, Lagos State Safety Commission, Lanre Mojola, said that the engagement was geared toward seeking support on the initiative to domesticate the Federal Government law on compulsory insurance on public buildings.

Mojola said this at a stakeholders conference organised by the commission and the NIA with the theme: Lagos State Digital Compulsory Insurance (Public Buildings) for Lagos State Government – Safer Lagos Insurance.

He said that the compulsory insurance on public buildings known as the Owners Occupiers Liability would cover different entities of public places or public buildings.

These include event centres, cinemas, schools, hospitals, worship centres, restaurants and bakeries.

The director-general noted that the state, in a bid to ensure the safety of lives and property, found it necessary to implement the statutory insurance for the benefit of all its residents.

“Safety is everyone’s responsibility, and statistics, as carried out by the commission, has revealed that over 480 buildings nationwide have collapsed within the last 44 years.

“This is the data we recorded, imagine so much more that were not recorded, ” he said.

Read also: Insurance industry recovering from COVID as reforms lift growth

According to him, this indicated the strength of insurance to bear liability, as most times, the government would have to pay compensation to the affected individuals.

Mojola stated that though it is the responsibility of the government to protect lives and property, rather than paying for losses, the government should focus on good governance and security in line with its THEME agenda.

He said that the state government would ensure that everyone is protected in the state and safe when using public places.

According to him, in case of unfortunate incidents, the government must also ensure that the victims are covered by insurance or compensated where death occured.

“Now that we have identified the problem, we have begun engagement, then we will educate the public on the need to key into the implementation of the law before we begin enforcement and sanction after the law is fully in place.

The director-general, NIA, Yetunde Ilori, appreciated the Lagos State government for the effort to make the initiative happen.

Ilori said Lagos State had been at the forefront of domestication of the federal law on compulsory insurance, and engagement for the implementation of the Owner Occupiers insurance had been on for over one year.

She stated that the domestication of the law was long overdue because insurance is a must and should be accepted as a culture in the country.

Ilori said that the compulsory insurance law is for all and sets out to give social assistance to the vulnerable in society.

“NIA has taken a step forward to digitalise the purchase of Occupiers Liability insurance at the comfort of your home and at a pocket-friendly price.

“Occupiers Liability is not about IGR or profit for the insurance companies but safety for all.

“Insurance would not prevent unfortunate events from happening but would provide succour to the affected and an avenue to bounce back.

“We need your support, as this is not about punitive measure but partnering to ensure that we are all our brother’s keeper.

“It is not about making business a liability but about sustainability,” she said.