Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abike
The Federal Government has inaugurated two committees to develop policies towards improving workplace safety and health of public servants.
The committees have till the end of April to submit its report.
The Head of the Civil Service of the Federation, Winifred Oyo-Ita, who inaugurated the committees in Abuja at the weekend, says the Joint Committee for the Development of a framework for the implementation of the Occupational Safety and Health and the Technical Committee for the Development of the Policy framework on public emergency management have two months to complete their assignment.
The joint committee has national policy on occupational safety and health and the employees compensation act as a working document, the technical committee is expected to develop the public service emergency management policy.
The Nigerian Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) is already implementing the employees compensation act 2010, which replaced the WORUMAN’s compensation act 2004,
She said the essence of setting up a committee is not to duplicate functions between the Head of Service and NSITF, but to create more awareness among public servants on the benefits of the scheme.
According to her, implementation of the outcome will enhance self-esteem and increase job satisfaction among public servants.
“Improving the well being of civil servants involves attending to a whole gamut of issues, including providing a healthy work environment, which guarantees the safety of workers at all times.
“In pursuant of this and to ensure the wellbeing and dignity of employees at work, the National Policy on Occupational Safety and Health was developed.
“This was also followed by the signing into law of the Employees Compensation Act (ECA) 2010, which is being implemented by the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF),” he said.
She said that the initiative was expected to provide the opportunity for civil servants and indeed the public service as a whole, to access the various benefits provided for in the ECA.
Oyo-Ita said that the technical committee members, who comprised of critical stakeholders from relevant organisations, were expected to develop the Public Service Emergency Management Policy.
She urged them to develop an action plan for the implementation of the Public Service Emergency Management Policy and to propose any other recommendations that would ensure effective implementation of the plan.
Oyo-Ita called on the Joint Committee members to examine the ECA 2010 and identify areas of collaboration between NSITF and the office of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF).
The chairperson of both committees, Mrs. Didi Walson-Jack, Permanent Secretary, Service Welfare Office (SWO), OHCSF, said that the committees would ensure a safe healthy work environment.
She said the objectives of her office was to promote international best practices in work environment and encourage social, cultural recreation and sporting activities for the benefits of public servants.
Mr. Badanga Lamido, who spoke on behalf of the committee members, assured the head of Service of their commitment to produce good results.
“The time of the initiative is apt and I want to assure you that we will put in our best and come up with result good report.’’
The Joint Committee for the Development of Framework for the Implementation of Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) comprised 11 members from NSITF, Federal Ministries of Health and Labour and Employment.
The Technical Committee for the Development of Public Service Emergency Management Policy Framework comprised 12 members from the Federal Road Safety Corps, Federal Fire Service, National Emergency Management Agency, National Institute of Architects among others.