About 70 insurers in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on Thursday gathered in Banjul to discuss claims management regarding the Brown Card Insurance Scheme in West Africa.
The April 24-25 event is the 1st zonal meeting this year of the ECOWAS Brown Card Scheme hosted by the Gambia National Bureau of ECOWAS Brown Card.
It is being preceded by an extraordinary general assembly to enable the scheme to adopt a new Consensus Brown Card for use in all ECOWAS member states.
The Brown Card Scheme is a compulsory insurance cover for third party liability against accidents involving vehicles traveling across the West African sub-region. It covers death, medical expenses, injury and material damage.
Basirou Njai, a deputy governor of the Central Bank of The Gambia (CBG), said the essence of insurance was defeated when companies defaulted on their most basic function, the timely settlement of genuine claims.
He said claims management and settlement lay at the heart of the Scheme as one of the most important aspects in the functioning of an insurance company.
Njai said speedy claims settlement could make a difference in a market that was highly competitive and economically challenging.
Ebou L. Bittaye, chairman of the Gambia National Bureau of ECOWAS Brown Card said the meeting was expected to arrive at firm resolutions and decisions about the new brown card and settlement that would be acceptable by all.
The meeting would discuss pertinent issues relating to the Consensus Brown Card and claims settlement under the scheme, added Mr Bittaye, who is also the Managing Director of Global Security Insurance Company in Gambia.
Technocrats say “the ECOWAS Brown Card Insurance Scheme is the most successful tool for integration within the sub-region as it facilitates the safe movement of peoples and goods in West Africa”.
The Scheme was established by a Protocol signed by ECOWAS heads of state in Cotonou, Benin, in May 1982.
Its objectives are to enhance the free movement of road users and foster a real regional integration and guarantee a fair and prompt compensation to victims of road accidents for losses suffered by visiting motorists travelling from other ECOWAS member countries.