Ngige assures workers of enhanced protection at work places

P. S. Fed. Min. of Labour and Employment, Dr. Clement Illoh, addressing the participants at a two-day Stakeholders’ validation workshop on diving, pressure vessels and lifting equipment regulation

ABUJA (Labour Ministry’ Report) – The Minister of Labour and Employment Sen. Chris Nwabueze Ngige, has assured Nigerians of the commitment of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to continue to protect the Nigerian workforce at their work places.

The Minister who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Dr. Clement Illoh gave this assurance recently while declaring open the validation workshop for Diving, Pressure Vessels and Lifting Equipment regulations.

The Minister said, “Technology and Development come with various risks on the human wellbeing. The ever changing world of work requires effective and up to date intervention for a preventive safety and health culture. Therefore, the need for subsidiary legislations to address contemporary challenges of safety and health at work places is imperative”

He stressed the benefits of the regulation which includes provision of a close guide for stakeholders’ compliance with relevant provisions of the factories ACT for safe work environment and processes, provision of more details and guide for the safe operations of Divers which will provide reduction in incidents and their consequences at work places

The Minister disclosed that a list of competent persons who were re-appointed after a refresher training workshop and necessary evaluation was available in his Ministry. He said these persons were reappointed for the purposes of examination and tests in lifting equipment and pressure vessels.

Sen. Ngige warned that it is now an offence to use persons or group of persons not certified within the law of the land, adding that his Ministry is determined to root out all fake and incompetent authorised inspectors from the system.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr. Clement Illoh who was represented by the Director Skills Development and Certification, Mr. Ibrahim Lawal Jilbia said, “Diving Operations are no doubt one of the most hazardous occupations; the workers in this sector are exposed to physical, mechanical, biological and psychosocial risk factors. However, the risk can be reduced significantly by adherence to regulations and adopting codes and standard in line with international best practices.’’

In their separate remarks, the representative of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Dr. Runo Onosode and the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Maureen Onyia described the draft diving, pressure vessels and lifting equipment regulations policy as timely while urging the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment to ensure full implementation of the policy upon its approval by the Federal Executive Council.