Successive governments, since 1992, have allowed the NIC (National Insurance Company) to collapse because they did not make the company strong enough to be able to compete with bigger private and foreign-owned insurance companies.
As a result of the near collapse of the company, the Tejan Kabbah administration identified NIC as one of the government-owned companies to be privatized by the NCP (National Commission for Privatization).
Even though the company is poorly managed, NIC has a huge portfolio of assets that makes it easily one of the biggest players in the insurance industry.
When the APC government of President Ernest Bai Koroma came into office in 2007, NIC was made completely redundant. In fact, the company was unable to compete with bigger players like RITCORP, and Starco Insurance any more.
During the Koroma era, the impression was created that RITCORP was owned by the President. This allegation was never denied by the management of RITCORP because it was in their best business interest.
Recently, the Managing Director of RITCORP, Mrs. Alice Onomake informed newsmen that, former President Koroma is not even the majority shareholder of RITCORP.
The SLPP government of President Julius Maada Bio is determined to protect both NIC and the Sierra Leone State Lottery (Lotto) by bringing forth legislations that will protect these national institutions from collapsing.
In the 2019 Financial Statement read by the Minister of Finance in the Chamber of Parliament on Friday 2nd November it was made very clear that all government MDAs (Ministries, Departments and Agencies) must now insure their vehicles, equipment and properties with the government-owned National Insurance Company. This move by the government has been commended by many people, who believe that certain national assets like the NIC must not be allowed to collapse as a result of unfair competition created by private owned and well-funded insurance companies.
We call on the government to ensure that NIC is protected, by forcing all MDAs to insure their vehicles, equipment and properties with the government-owned NIC.
If NIC is allowed to collapse, thousands of Sierra Leonean employees will lose their jobs and their dependants will suffer. The point must be made that NIC is 100% owned by the Government of Sierra Leone.
Government needs to urgently protect NIC and ensure that it does not collapse like a pack of cards. Period!