A model regulator of a secure and developed insurance industry

2023 Annual Insurance Week launched, to kick off next week

The 2023 Annual Insurance Week (AIW), the Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) flagship event that seeks to promote insurance awareness among the public and ensure consumer protection has been launched.

The five-day event will kick off on Monday March 6th to 10th, at Railways Grounds, Kampala under the theme “Be Insured; We will Bear Your Risk”.

This year’s AIW is organised by IRA in partnership with the Uganda Insurers’ Association (UIA), The Insurance Training College (ITC), the Insurance Brokers Association of Uganda (IBAU), the Deposit Protection Fund (DPF), ZepRe, UgandaRe and Georgina Eye Clinic.

Speaking at the launch press conference at the Insurance Tower on Wednesday, the IRA Chief Executive Officer, Alhaj Kaddunabbi Ibrahim Lubega said the week seeks to promote insurance awareness among the public to stimulate demand and ensure consumer protection.

Additionally, the week will showcase the different players in the insurance market and their respective roles in the insurance ecosystem and give back to the community through Corporate Social Responsibility.

Commenting about the theme, Alhaj Kaddunabbi said: “This theme was carefully chosen because risk management is the underlying tenet of the insurance industry.

“We know that certain risks are beyond the resources of most individuals and businesses, so insurance takes on that responsibility to compensate the policyholder and put them in a position they enjoyed before the loss occurred.”

Lined up activities

According to the Director Planning, Research and Market Development at IRA, Mr. Protazio Sande, several activities have been lined up for this week-long event, including blood donation, free eye checkup and medical camp as well as free consultation on all insurance matters.

There will also be presentations on various insurance-related topics including rights and obligations of policyholders, different classes of insurance and career talks, among others.

Th event will be attended by all licensed industry players and key stakeholders, to share pertinent information on how Ugandans can better protect themselves, their families and enterprises from unforeseen risks.

“I take this opportunity to invite all Ugandans, both the insured and prospective ones, to come to Railways Grounds in big numbers and learn how to use insurance to protect themselves and their families against potential losses orchestrated by numerous risks that are inherent within our daily lives and endeavors,” he said.

He added: “Players will showcase the different insurance products on the market and tell you everything you need to know about them to help you make the right buying decision.”

The AIW will be crowned on Friday March 10, with the 2022 Insurance Innovation Awards gala dinner, that will recognise and honour industry players that have exhibited proactiveness in provision of solutions that address identified needs, and in an effective and efficient manner.

The 2022 awards are being organised under the theme “Celebrating Innovation for Excellence in Insurance”.

Bank with confidence

Speaking during the press conference, the DPF Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Julia Clare Olima Oyet urged the public to bank with confidence because their deposits are protected up to Ugx.10 million.

“In case your bank closes, you will be paid up to Ugx.10 million, depending on how much you had on your account at the time of the closure. If you had over Ugx.10 million, the balance will be paid after the bank is liquidated,” she said.

She, however, urged the public, especially those people with over Ugx.10 million in a bank deposit to always monitor the performance of their financial institutions for any red flags.

“Traditionally, deposit insurance is supposed to cover the small, unsophisticated, uneducated depositor who just takes their money to a bank but they do not have much information about the bank.

“But you who has more than Ugx.10million you are expected to be reading the financial performance of your banking institution and getting information from credible sources,” she said.

People will appreciate insurance services

The Uganda Reinsurance Company Chief Executive Officer Mr. Ronald Musoke applauded IRA for organising the AIW, saying it provides a platform for industry players to come together and interact with the public to help them understand the sector better.

“I encouraged the public to come in big numbers to among others get to know what differentiates an insurer from a reinsurer, a broker from an agent and how we all contribute towards serving them better,” Mr. Musoke said.

He added: “At the end of this AIW interaction, the public will be able to appreciate our products and services better and how affordable these products are. Our products have always been seen as very expensive, offering complicated products and services but we believe that with this interface with the public, they will be able to appreciate what we offer much better.

He said this is expected to increase insurance uptake.

The IBAU Chairman, Mr. Paul Muhame said through the AIW engagement, industry players will listen and engage with the public and understand their needs to enable them innovate solutions that address the identified needs.

“We will be able to raise awareness within the industry, ensure there is a lot of solutions for the problems out there for everyone,” he said.

Mr. Ibrahim Kalule, the Uganda Insurers’ Association Publicity, Advocacy & Market Development Officer said the AIW gives industry players an opportunity to engage with the public to understand what insurance is about and why it is important.

“Having come from episodes of the Covid-19 pandemic, am sure most people can now appreciate the relevance of insurance. It is also evident that now that parents have just taken children back to school, savings become important for families and insurance provides solutions through which individuals can save,” he said.

Ms. Sylvia Kajubi, the Insurance Training College Deputy Principal also alluded that the AIW offers a platform to engage the public and get feedback that will help them improve, especially in the area of professionalising the industry’s workforce.