Recently a troubling video featuring a traumatised car owner surfaced on social media. The man, obviously lost for words, kept shouting, “look at my car! Look at my car! Look at my car!” as he recorded the staggering vandalism of his car by spare parts thieves.
The video captures the bone-chilling agony and shock of the vehicle owner, passers-by and neighbours as they inspect a vehicle completely stripped off all its functional parts – the dashboard console, electronics, tyres, rims, full and sidelights, battery, and engine control module, popularly called brainbox, amongst others. The vandalism left the car a mere iron carcass.
The viral video prompted others to share similar harrowing stories about the criminal vehicle vandalism visited on them. What is apparent is that there has been an upsurge in vehicle vandalism around the country. This resurgence is soon becoming a daily occurrence in the country.
As a suspected car thief recounted to Vanguard newspaper, the motivation for this utter destruction is to “dismantle cars, the engine and sell it as scrap metal”.
This edition of “Insuring Happiness,” highlights the critical reasons for the upsurge in car vandalism in recent times and steps vehicle owners should take to have peace of mind.
1. The spike in foreign exchange
Nigeria is an import-dependent nation, and with the forex exchange challenges weakening to the local currency, it is expected that the price of foreign goods, such as household appliances, car accessories and vehicle spare parts, would spike.
This surge affects both the traders and car owners. While the traders find it difficult and expensive to access foreign currencies to approach the market to import goods to stock up inventory, the car owners are left to deal with the resultant price increase.
Consequently, the price increase slows down trading as more customers lose their spending power. The reality then makes local substitutes from accident vehicles attractive to the buyers to stay in business. Unfortunately, criminals exploit the increased local demand by vandalising vehicles and selling the parts as scraps from accident vehicles.
2. Inflation will always affect trade
It is worth noting that Nigeria’s inflation rate for October 2021 dropped further to 15.99% from 16.63% in September 2021. Despite this continuous decline for seven months after hitting a peak of 18.17% in March 2021, the fact remains that prices of goods and services are hinged on double-digit inflation of 15.99 per cent.
This inflation reality implies that prices of goods are way too high to encourage spending in the economy. This economic situation leaves the sellers of goods, including car spare parts sellers, seeking alternative supply sources to buy at competitive prices and sell affordably to the customers. Since Nigeria does not manufacture these parts, the supply gap is filled by criminals ready to beat the demand by targeting innocent vehicle owners.
3. Getting insurance should not be an option, but a must
The information on these criminal trends should spur individuals to be proactive in providing peace of mind towards securing their valuable assets, including their cars. Security issues, inflation, and economic realities show that car vandalism might still be on the surge, which can cause unnecessary trepidation. The solution is to put a mitigation plan in place that allows you to recover your assets without financial exposure if the worse occurs. This is where insurance comes in.
One of the risk management tools available by Leadway Assurance, a market leader famed for being Nigeria’s most reliable insurer, is the Leadway Comprehensive Motor Insurance provides the widest cover against theft or other damages to your vehicle.
The policy also covers losses that may come from accidents and an assurance of compensation if the accident results in bodily injury or even death. Another exciting feature of this product is that it provides indemnity to the policyholder should the insured vehicle damage another person’s property or vehicle.
These policies’ base benefit is up to One million Naira cover for such accidental damages to a party’s vehicle or property. There is also cover for total and permanent disability to the insured to a limit of One million Naira and medical expenses, including that of the other vehicle’s passenger(s) to a limit of One hundred thousand Naira in the event of hospitalisation or severe injury.
An added sweetener is that the Leadway Auto Insurance policies are closer to those who need it and can be conveniently accessed via the website in just 120 seconds. That is almost at a twinkle of an eye.
To find out more about accessing this policy, please visit https://www.leadway.com/auto-insurance/ or call the Leadway Assurance customer care helpline on 01-2800-700. You can also send an email to [email protected] for professional advisory or request a call back by visiting www.leadway.com/call-me.
We are within your reach on WhatsApp via our virtual assistant support on 08129997044 or any of our social media outlets – @LeadwayAssurance on Facebook & Instagram, @Leadwayinsure on Twitter. You can also send a DM, and we will revert with all the information you require.