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MP Parmod Chand Caught Out Over His Misinformation

MP Parmod Chand Caught Out Over His Misinformation
Opposition Members, (from left) Biman Prasad, Viliame Gavoka and Pramod Chand with Local Government Minister Praveen Bala outside Parliament on May 23, 2017. Photo: Ronald Kumar.
May 24
11:00 2017

National Federation Party Member of Parliament and bus operator in Labasa, Parmod Chand took centre stage during Monday’s Parliamentary sitting.

This when he insinuated in a loud voice about some possible collusion between Government and insurance companies.

In his grandstanding “sermon” he referred to some things which have since been established to be totally incorrect, by Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

In fact, this is what Mr Chand said about compulsory third party (CTP):

“And in my opinion the current third party policy creates a false sense of security through payment of a compulsory annual insurance which is then waived in various exclusion clauses, as I have said earlier, in favour of the insurance company who provide the cover.

“It is very important for us to note this, that the CTP premium was increased by the insurance company some weeks before the budget announcement in 2012.

“There was an announcement made that there will be a levy and I wonder if the insurance companies had prior knowledge of Government’s decision and preempted this with the premium increase to cover the 20 per cent contribution that is tabled to government. This would mean that the public is funding the 20 per cent contribution to the government and not the insurance companies.

“Just before this announcement was made the insurance companies increase their premium by 20 per cent. So basically the people of Fiji are paying for that 20 per cent not the insurance companies…”

This is incorrect. Once again, yet another member from the Opposition has been caught misleading Parliament and every individual who watched him on Monday.

If Mr Chand was so casual about information accuracy in Parliament, one wonders what sort of information or misinformation he is spreading out in communities.

Some facts about insurance levy as outlined by Mr Sayed-Khaiyum in demolishing Mr Chand’s claims:

  • The 20 per cent levy was announced in November 2011 and was effective from 1 Jan 2012.
  • No other insurance companies increased premium rates in 2011 except QBE.  However, it is important to note that QBE raised premium rates by about 2 per cent on 1 Jan 2011 as the VAT rate was increased from 12.5 per cent to 15 per cent.
  • Only Sun Insurance raised rates prior to the announcement of the 20 per cent levy on CTP.
  • All other insurance companies kept the same premium rate or reduced rates prior to the announcement of the 20 per cent levy.
  • When Government announced the 20 per cent levy, it capped rates. Since then rates have come down.
  • The lowest CTP for a public transport vehicle with a minimum of 11 passengers is now $140 as compared to $250 prior to the introduction of the 20 per cent levy.
  • So bus operators like Mr Chand have benefited from the Government’s policy to cap the CTP premium.  The CTP for public transport vehicles are lower now for all companies than that in 2011.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum yesterday read out some other facts that eluded Mr Chand.

He told Parliament details on CTP in 2010 and immediately before the 20 per cent levy was introduced.

SUN INSURANCE

ν Private Vehicle: 2010 ($110) increased to $127 on 1 September 2011. Increase in premium is about 16%. Currently they charge $70.

ν Public Vehicle  (More than 11 passengers): 2010 ($250) increased to $290 on 1 September 2011. Increase in premium is 16%.

ν Trucks: 2010 ($210) increased to $230. Increase in premium is 10%. Currently is $140.

ν The reason Sun Insurance gave for the increase in CTP rates is that FRCA clarified that VAT was applicable on CTP.

QBE

Details of the increase in premium rates by 2 per cent are as follows:

  • Private Vehicles: 2010 ($194) increased to $198 on 1 Jan 2011.
  • Public Vehicles: 2010 ($397) increased to $406 on 1 Jan 2011.
  • Trucks: 2010 ($374) increased to $382 on 1 Jan 2011.
  • No increase in premium just prior to the 2012 budget announcement.

NEW INDIA

  • Private vehicles: 2010 ($110). No change in 2011.
  • Public Vehicles: 2010 ($290) reduced to $250 in 2011.
  • Trucks: 2010 ($220) reduced to $200 in 2011.

TOWER INSURANCE

  • Private Vehicle: 2010 ($146.75). No change in 2011.
  • Public Vehicles: 2010 ($290.50). No change in 2011.
  • Trucks: 2010 ($402.50). No change in 2011.

DOMINION INSURANCE

  • Private Vehicle: 2010 ($112.25). No change in 2011.
  • Public Vehicle: 2010 ($256). No change in 2011.
  • Trucks: 2010 ($221.50). No change in 2011.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedback:  jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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