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Re-industrialising economy through sustainable policies for growth 

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Issa Aremu


With the Federal Government’s commitment to re-industrialise the economy through sustainable industrial policies, the need to totally eradicate smuggling and dumping has been emphasized.

Specifically, organised labour, which welcomed the policies, especially the new Cotton, Textile and Garment (CTG) policy, urged that Nigeria must improve on policy environment, education and technology to raise the nation’s output. 

Besides, they maintained that for Nigeria to achieve the desired output as well as improve productivity, there is an urgent need to declare emergency in the energy sector.

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Vice President, IndustriALL Global Union, Issa Aremu, said this at a workshop on “Media as Change Agent in Industrial and Labour Relations”, organised by Labour Writers Association of Nigeria (LAWAN), in Ibadan over the weekend.

Currently, he said Nigeria falls below capacity in production, urging that considerable work needed to be done on national productivity.He mentioned the National Productivity Centre (NPC), where the challenge lies in stimulating institutional productivity.

The labour chief stated that as Nigeria marks its 60th independence anniversary this year, the need to be more productive to compete favourably is pertinent.

According to him, no better time to raise the noise level of the production crisis than now.He declared that Nigeria is no longer a productive nation of the immediate post-colonial era of 60s and 70s, thereby calling on members of LAWAN to be a change agent that Nigeria needs to produce what it consumes.

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“Currently, we still consume what we do not produce; export raw materials that we should have turned to manufactured goods, import same products produced by others with tears. We import unemployment and export jobs. This must change. Productivity is an input/output relationship.

“We must incentivise productivity to make Nigeria productive. We must reward value addition possibly more than we must damn value depletion, which is what corruption and graft is. 

“LAWAN has a critical role in raising awareness about productivity,” Aremu said.

Acknowledging the fact that productivity cannot improve in the mill without an efficient workforce, he emphasised the need for an effective staff competence and effectiveness.  

Undoubtedly, he said every worker should be educated to understand that he has a personal stake.On how to improve productivity, he suggested that organisations must imbibe work culture and ethics, punctuality, avoid absenteeism, management prerogatives, motivate the workforce and must follow and respect procedures among others in the fortunes and misfortunes of the organisation in which he works and earns his living. 

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In the past, according to him, organisations attached a lot more importance to capital, to the neglect of labour, but the situation has changed in favour of labour.

“Most organisations now recognise the fact that their most valuable asset is their workforce, because it is the effectiveness and efficiency of the employee that determines the organisation’s productivity level,” he added.

Speaking on the theme also, Executive Director, International Press Centre (IPC), Lagos, Lanre Arogundade, who urged the labour reporters to be professional in all instances, advised them to arm themselves with all necessary fact checking and investigative tools to report industrial and labour issues. 

He said in order to develop focused and effective communication activities that promote the confidence in Industrial/Labour relations in the country, it is vital to understand the role of the media.

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According to him, such knowledge could disclose the peculiarities of the country’s labour and industrial development and could create preconditions for implementation of corrective actions in targeted areas. 

Earlier, Chairman, LAWAN, Bimbola Oyesola, noted that the essence of the capacity building workshop was to get members informed and acquainted in their reportage on issues in the sector. 

She said it was important for labour reporters to improve on their capacity for effective reportage, while she also urged journalists on the need to ensure a balanced reportage before going to press.

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