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The Vice Chancellor, Enugu State University of Technology (ESUT), Prof. Anike Okechukwu Luke, has revealed that the number of Nigerian adults that are financially excluded is over 50 per cent of the 99 million adult population.
Speaking at the Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN) 2019 Education Seminar held in Enugu, the Enugu State capital, he stressed that negative impacts of financial exclusion are frustrating access to insurance policy of any kind b y the nation’s adult population.
According to him, “The inability of the populace to save as a result of double digit inflation in the economy, is a serious challenge as most families in Nigeria don’t have enough to take care of their basic needs let alone save or engage in insurance.”
In his further submission, Prof Luke said “Poor insurance awareness accounted for why most Nigerians have limited knowledge level on the need to take up an insurance cover, which affected their perception of insurance.
He said the surest model to proffer solutions remains aggressive media campaigns to educate Nigerians on the importance of insurance, noting that such campaigns will enrich the knowledge level of both rural and urban populace on the need for insurance access.
Prof Luke added that “Effort must be put in place to create jobs for the teeming youth. More jobs, no doubt, will increase financial access. This is because reduction in formal employment will lead to reduced in disposable income and savings. This will ultimately affect insurance,” he pointed out.
According to him, insurance is equally key to sustainable financial inclusion as there is no future without insurance.
In his opening remarks, CIIN President, Eddie Efekoha, harped on the importance of inclusion and the need for creativity in service offerings of insurance stakeholders in order to grow the insurance industry.
He stressed that “It is common knowledge that Insurance penetration is nowhere near where it should be in the country. As practitioners, we can also acknowledge that companies are doing all that they can within the tenets of the law to reach out to customers in order to create a sustained demand for insurance products. The question is, are our best efforts enough? What more can we do to improve our lot?”
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