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Nigeria assumes presidency of ILO Government Group

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The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, has assumed office as President, Government Group of the Governing Board (GB) of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), at its just-ended 37th session in Geneva, Switzerland.

The Minister was handed over the office, domiciled in the ILO’s Headquarters by Nigeria’s Labour Attaché in Geneva, Aniefiok Essa, who has been overlooking it on behalf of the Nigerian Mission since June 2019.

In his address to the Governing Board plenary, Ngige called for the democratisation of the ILO Governing Board, throwing his weight behind the Africa Group position that the democratisation process started since 1986 be fast-forwarded to assist the Tripartite Working Group established by the 108th session of the International Labour Conference in June this year.

He said although ratification of the democratisation amendments has been yielding acceptance among members since it commenced 33 years ago, the organisation has got unfinished business as regards the democratisation of its structures, to ensure fair representation of all regions and equity among member states.

“We are however encouraged that the continuous promotion of this ratification is not only a permanent item on our GB agenda whose report is expected from the DG, but also an opportunity to constantly remind our members of the unfinished business of democratisation of the Governing body of our organisation,” he said.

Ngige further asked the Director General to clarify the ambiguities surrounding the Tripartite Working Group such as the status and source of the powers of the group, its size, who and what qualifies for membership, composition, duration of assignment as well as the terms of reference.

Based on the strength of the questions raised by the Minister, which threw up new issues, the Director General had to adjourn the session, while adjusting its timetable to enable his office critically examine and provide adequate answers.

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Chris NgigeILO
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