Reduction in unemployment will tackle insecurity, says Labour
The organised labour has called on the Federal Government to address high rate of unemployment in the country. The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) warned that if the rate of unemployment is not properly addressed, the level of insecurity would continue to skyrocket.
NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, said this during the 40th anniversary celebration of the Labour Writers Association of Nigeria (LAWAN).
He said the theme of the anniversary, ‘Growing Insecurity and Unemployment: The Way Forward’, was dear to the heart of labour, being one of the major challenges currently facing the country.
Describing unemployment as a time bomb, Wabba, said if not urgently addressed, it would be difficult for the nation to experience peace.
The NLC chief, who also assured of the union’s continuous support to LAWAN, commended members’ efforts in joining the struggles to fight and report the ills in the workplace.
Speaking on the theme, Director General and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Michael Imoudu National Institute for Labour Studies (MINILS), Issa Aremu, said with what is happening in the country, especially with the recent #EndSARS protests, which brought out large number of youths across the country to the streets, there is a nexus between unemployment and insecurity.
On the way forward to address the menace, he said there is need to take into cognisance, Chapter 2 of the amended 1999 Constitution and directives to states in creating employment, welfare of the citizens, minimum wage and pension, among others.
He lamented that it was unconstitutional and unacceptable that leaders have not worked enough towards the realisation of the policies, adding that the constitution was clear on employment for every citizen.
Similarly, President of the TUC, Olaleye Quadri, while congratulating LAWAN on the milestone, restated that the union will keep fighting and forging ahead to make Nigerian workers enjoy the fruits of their labour.
In his address, Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, while commending LAWAN on the significant milestone, called for strict adherence to the inherent sacredness of the profession, dictated by objectivity and balance coverage of issues.
Ngige, who was represented by the Special Adviser on Media, Nwachukwu Obidiwe, stressed that the Buhari-led administration has maintained an equable industrial milieu and supportive of upward national productivity.
On tracking and solving labour disputes, Ngige revealed that the ministry has addressed over 1680 disputes. He also disclosed that the National Labour Advisory Council (NLAC) has also been re-constituted after years of budgetary constraints, while the review of obsolete labour laws is awaiting legislative action.
In her remarks, Chairman, LAWAN, Bimbola Oyesola, said that the choice of the theme was informed by the need to reflect on what could be done to put an end to the challenges bedeviling the society.
“As media practitioners in the labour sector, we are burdened and disturbed by the growing number of our youths, who roam the streets daily without any means of livelihood.
“More worrisome is the spate of insecurity in our land and the fact that the most susceptible number of perpetrators are likewise the youths,” Oyesola said.