THE Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige has urged stakeholders in the labour sector to support Federal Government’s efforts at minimizing the adverse effect of recession on Nigerian workers.
The minister who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Dr. Clemet Illoh was speaking while declaring open the 4th Registrar of Trade Unions Annual Workshop with the theme: “The Role of Social Partners in Combating the Challenges of Economic Recession.”
“A lot needs to be done to stem the unwelcome tide of recession. Stakeholders in industrial relations must come together to proffer ways of minimizing, if not totally eliminating its adverse effects, as workers bears the major brunt of recession with the survival of trade unions threatened, and issues of downsizing, redundancy, casualization, and indecent work among others on the increase,” he said.
Speaking further, Ngige expressed optimism that various actions spearheaded by the Federal Government will improve economic activities and steer the nation’s economy out of recession.
He advised stakeholders in the labour sector to bargain in good faith, open communication and appropriate disclosure of relevant information devoid of deceit, delay and denial.
He said at the end of the workshop, participants would be able to develop strategies for overcoming challenges of economic recession and also enhance increased productivity for national development.
In his remarks, the Country Director of ILO, Denims Zulu commended the Ministry for proactively facilitating the platform which will avail stakeholders in the labour sector the opportunities to discuss and proffer solution to the adverse effects of recession on Nigerian workers.
In their separate messages the President of the Nigerian Labour Congress NLC, Comrade Ayuba Wabba and his Trade Union Congress TUC Counterpart Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama, stated that recession poses a lot of challenges to the industrial relations milieu as workers, pensioners and their family are mostly affected.
The president of the two labour centres urged the Federal Government to give the review of the existing minimum wage the attention it deserved as increase in wages can also serves as a way out of recession.
The representative of the Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association NECA, Adenike Ajala stated that espite the current economic situation, the organized private sector is committed to ensuring that they provide decent working environment for workers. She emphasised that to do otherwise is counterproductive as this will affect workers’ commitment and productivity.