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IRA holds sensation exercise to enlighten stakeholders on insurance policy

The Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) has embarked on a mission to sensitise members of the public in all counties on the importance of having an insurance policy.

IRA Corporate Communication Official, Evans Kibagendi, said that “Bima Mashinani” sensitisation exercise, will have a forum with stakeholders at the county levels, to educate them on the importance of insurance cover.

The Insurance Regulatory Authority is a Statutory Government Agency established under the Insurance Act (Amendment) 2006, CAP 487 of the Laws of Kenya, to regulate, supervise and develop the insurance industry.

The sensitisation exercise will target educating journalists, teachers, and other stakeholders in various sectors on the importance of having insurance, in order to safeguard their wealth, education, and life.

Kibagendi said that IRA is aware of insurance complaints and claims from the policy holders, but assured the public that it was mandated to protect consumer rights, provide consumer education and investor information.

“IRA has created a Consumer Protection Department to listen to complains, gather information and address accordingly, on the needs of the policy holders”, said Kibagendi.

The Official added that IRA will keep the insurance industry in check, to ensure that they treat policy holders according to the stipulated laws and policies that guard the industry.

Kenya has grown in terms of insurance becoming the third country in Africa with the highest number of policy holders in the insurance industry.

Kibagendi said that the insurance uptake in the country is being taken seriously and it was part of the mandate of the IRA, to ensure that the uptake is increased through awareness creation.

He, however, called upon the public to take time and visit insurance companies, to get policies that will suit their needs to address the ever-growing exposure risks.

“We have insurance policies that are quite low to cater to the needs of individuals with low income,” affirmed Kibagendi.

He noted that the government is also involved in the micro insurance business, to help individuals with low income to access insurance policies, tailored to suit their needs in order to protect their wealth and their families.

The Policyholders Compensation Fund (PCF), Corporate Communication Official, Rosemary Kavili, noted that the sensitisation exercise will go a long way to enlighten the public on the needs of having insurance.

Kavili explained PCF was mandated to compensate policyholders whose insurance companies have been placed under the statutory management, to give confidence to the insurance industry.

PCF is a State Corporation under the National Treasury that was established through the Legal Notice No.105 of 2004 and commenced its operations in January 2005. The decision to establish the Fund was informed by the collapse of several Insurance companies prior to the year 2005.

She said that PCF mandate is to ensure policyholders are compensated through placing claims in case their insurance company licenses are cancelled.

Kavili also acknowledged that Concord Insurance, Resolution Insurance and Standard Assurance are under statutory management and called upon any policyholders in the three affected insurance companies to come out and place their claims in order to kick start their compensation claims.

By Geoffrey Makokha

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