PORT HARCOURT: THE imbalance of power between employers of labour and their employees have been identified as one of the major challenges facing workers unions in the country.
To bridge some existing gaps, the national assembly have been urged to make laws that address article 4 and other similar documents of the international Labour organisation which the country is a signatory to into existence.
â€œWe appeal to the National Assembly to review the Nigerian labour laws to give full effect to the ILO conventions ratified by Nigeria. They should also incorporate Article 4 of ILO Convention 158 of 03/11/2005 as part of our labour lawsâ€
Making the appeal in a paper presented before the general meeting of Air Transport Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, (ATSSAN) and Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAN), Port Harcourt branch, Public relations officer, Port Harcourt zone of Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN), Mr Chika Onuegbu said it was sad to note that because of the harsh economic realities Nigerians were now been forced to sign all kinds of documents before being employed.
Noting that some of the contracts gone into with these employers were exploitative he blamed this on the absence of relevant laws to regulate labour operations in the country.
While calling for what he termed employment protection laws to be in place to protect the Nigerian workers Onuegbu said legislation of ILO conventions which Nigeria is a part of would guarantee workers the needed atmosphere to operate.
According to him, situation where government as the largest employer of labour in the country also regulates the employment sector was bad. He thus called for laws to guarantee Nigerian workers room for ventilation.
â€œIn Nigeria, the Government is both the regulator and the highest employer of labour. This is a dual and conflicting position and history has shown that the neutrality of Government in regulating labour relations in Nigeria cannot be taken for granted.â€