The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved a new National Policy on Occupational Safety, 2020.
According to the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, who disclosed this to State House correspondents, the aim of the policy is to promote the safety of workers in their work locations in the country.
Ngige added that it was provided for by the 1999 Constitution.
He also said the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) convention recognised that countries should have such a policy in place to protect workers.
He stated that the policy was last reviewed 14 years ago, necessitating the urgency to have a new one in place in 2020.
Nigige stated, “The last policy we have was approved in 2006, which makes it exactly 14 years since that was approved by the Federal Executive Council and that is the policy we have been working on. But you know that 14 years is a long span in the life of any law so in the course of operation, certain issues have been thrown up, the world has gone digital, work place mechanism and hazards have been changing and it was therefore necessary that we do a new policy.
“This policy we did now is what you call repeal and replace and it takes care of all that is needed for now, for the health of Nigerian workers…
“It gives specific roles to agencies -National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA); Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA); Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA); Standards Organisation of Nigeria; and the Federal Ministry of Health.
“Everybody has his own role now because it is a cross-cutting situation as most Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government are involved.”