The Asset Management Company of Nigeria, AMCON, has effectively taken over the National Insurance Corporation of Nigeria, NICON Insurance.
NICON Insurance was privatized in 2005 with the core investor having 70 percent shares, and the Federal Government retaining 30 percent. The major investor was alleged to use the assets of the company as collateral for securing credit facilities from financial institutions thus, the fortunes of the company continued to decline and the Federal Government shares were later diluted. As a result of this, AMCON had decided to take over the affairs of the company.
Howbeit, the core investor had sought to challenge the said decision in Court. The court ruled in favor of AMCON but NICON went on an appeal and the court ordered the parties to maintain the status quo, which led to Monday’s take over by the new board.
The Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) stated that a new board had taken over on Tuesday and pledged to turn the company’s fortunes around. Addressing a handful of NICON’s management staff, led by the Deputy General Manager, Corporate Advocacy, Mr. Kunle Adewale, the interim board chairman, Lamis Dikko, called for cooperation with the board to reposition the insurance company which he described as a national legacy. He said the meeting was a prelude to last Friday’s meeting of the board where far-reaching decisions, including the immediate termination of the appointments of the erstwhile managing director and executive directors of the insurance company, were taken.
Dikko said the mandate of the new Board was to preserve NICON Insurance as a going concern until a new investor came aboard as the previous owner had woefully failed to sustain and maintain the organization. He said that all the staff that are desirous to stay back and work for the good of the organization had nothing to fear but should support the new board to turn around the fortunes of the company