South Africa: Extreme Weather Events Cause Surge in Insurance Claims - South African News Briefs - November 16, 2023

16 November 2023


Johannesburg Hailstorm Triggers Major Insurance Claims Surge

Insurance brokers anticipate the recent Johannesburg hailstorm to lead to major insurance claims, potentially the biggest in three years, although some mention larger storms in other regions earlier in the year, reports IOL. The storm caused major damage to buildings and cars, and the full extent of the damage is still being assessed. There has been an increase in the severity and frequency of weather-related insurance claims in South Africa in recent years. The most severe weather event of 2023 was the storm in the Western Cape in September. The insurance industry expects the claims related to the recent hailstorm in Johannesburg to rise further in the coming days.

Ex-Cop Accuses State Security Agency of Hindering Eskom Corruption Probes

Retired police brigadier Jap Burger testified before Parliament about the State Security Agency's reluctance to address corruption within power utility Eskom, reports EWN. Despite efforts to investigate corruption, Burger claimed that the focus was primarily on transactional crimes rather than dismantling syndicates. He mentioned seeking cooperation from the State Security Agency (SSA) to validate information from a private intelligence exercise at Eskom, conducted by George Fivaz's forensic company but alleged that all collaboration was abruptly halted. Burger named a counter-intelligence agent who supposedly impeded the SSA's collaboration with the police in addressing these issues. The Standing Committee on Public Accounts has been examining allegations raised by former Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter since April to determine if further inquiry is necessary.

MultiChoice Loses Half a Million Subscribers in South Africa

MultiChoice experienced a slight uptick in DStv Premium subscribers from April to September, attributed to the Rugby World Cup, reports Moneyweb. However, overall subscriber numbers dwindled across Premium, mid-market, and mass-market segments. Load shedding and economic uncertainties played a role in subscriber decline, with half a million South African subscribers lost in the past year. The company supported non-paying subscribers during load shedding, impacting subscription revenues, which declined despite package price hikes. While streaming subscriptions increased notably, Showmax faces significant trading losses. Despite a 4% revenue increase, MultiChoice reported an 18% drop in trading profit, partly due to forex losses in Nigeria, leading to an operating loss for the period.

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