By Clifford Ndujihe
To boost workers’ welfare and make Nigeria’s labour laws conform to international best practices and current realities, the Federal Government, labour and employers have reached agreement on five bills.
These bills will be submitted to the National Assembly for urgent action.
The agreement was reached at a three-day retreat in Lagos between March 2 and 4.
Held under the auspices of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment in conjunction with the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC; Trade Union Congress, TUC, and Nigeria Employers Consultative Association, NECA, with the International Labour Organisation, ILO, providing technical support, participants at the retreat reviewed national labour bills.
Labour and Employment Minister, Dr Chris Ngige, declared the retreat open, while Minister of State, Labour and Employment, Olorogun Festus Keyamo(SAN), chaired the technical session.
There was a joint communiqué by Olorogun Keyamo, Minister of State, Labour and Employment; Ayuba Wabba, NLC president; Quadri Olaleye, TUC President; and Timothy Olawale, Director-General, NECA.
It said: ”The retreat was for the purpose of updating Nigeria’s labour laws to conform with international best practices and current realities in the world of work.
“The five national labour bills considered at the three-day retreat were Collective Labour Relations Bill; Labour Standard Bill; Labour \Institutions Bill; Occupational Safety and Health Bill, and the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (Amendment) Act.
”After intense deliberations on the bills, government and the social partners were able to reach consensus on most of the provisions in the aforementioned bills and would finalise outstanding issues at a validation meeting in Abuja.
“The final outcome of the exercise would be forwarded to the National Assembly for legislative action.”