Towards the development of a robust Occupational Safety and Health Management System in Nigeria and the facilitation of our Nations flow with global trends and best practices, the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment, Sen. Chris Ngige, has constituted a tripartite-plus consultative meeting for the review of the National Policy on Occupational Safety and Health.
The Minister, who was represented by the Director, Skills Development and Certification Department in the Ministry, Mr. Ibrahim Lawal Jilbia, said that the review is coming after the development of the well-documented National Profile on Occupational Safety and Health System and their activities. While appreciating the International Labour Organisation (ILO) for supporting the development of a framework that facilitates Nigeria’s flow with global trends and best practices in securing the safety and health of our working population.
Sen. Ngige, emphasized that policies drive sustainable development, as all member units of the system are made to work in synergy towards common goals and objectives. The International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention C.155 on Occupational Safety and Health serves as the entry point of a standard national effort with regards to Occupational Safety Health.
Speaking further, Ngige assured that Labour administration under the current administration led by President Muhammadu Buhari, remains proactive and will continue to embrace a strategic approach towards tackling various social and economic challenges.
“My candid advice to all our esteemed stakeholders involved in this project is that you work with an open mind, avoiding duplication of duties and unjustifiable conflicts of interest, in order to come out with a revised policy that is acceptable to all. The ministry shall in the course of delivering on its mandate on Labour Safety, Health and Welfare protection, continue to accommodate stakeholders’ interest in the spirit of an enlarged social dialogue,” he concluded.     
In his address, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr. Bolaji Adebiyi, who was represented by Director, Occupational Safety and Health Department in the Ministry, Dr. Ifeoma Anyanwutaku, said that the policy review is expected to synchronize all efforts towards ensuring safe and healthy workplaces all over Nigeria, for the protection of our valuable workforce and promoting productivity for a more virile National economy.
According to her, “a properly managed safety and health system will deliver a safe and healthy work environment and also provide a safety conscious workforce and ensure the delivery of high quality goods and services that are a reflection of high productivity.”
She added that, the reviewed policy document will no doubt constitute an effective instrument for positive change in Occupational Safety and Health service delivery across the country.
Earlier in their separate goodwill messages, the representatives of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Maureen Onyia-Ekwuazi, Trade Union Congress (TUC), Comrade Anka Hassan and Mrs. Adenike Ajala, representing NECA asserted that safety and Health is a very important issue in the workplace because it affects both the employer and employee. They all agreed that the policy is overdue for review, especially in the life of our ever-changing work environment. Emphasizing the need for all the stakeholders to bring in their experiences in the issue to be addressed so as to come up with a robust document that will be acceptable by all.            
Samuel Olowookere
Deputy Director (Press)

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