Senator Chris Ngige, the Minister of Labour and Employment has affirmed the Federal Government’s commitment to the implementation of the Local Content Act as it is pivotal to job creation.
Ngige said this in a statement signed by Mr Samuel Olowookere, the Deputy Director, Press in the ministry.
Olowookere said that the minister made the remarks when he received a delegation from the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) led by its President, Mr Otis Anyaeji.
Ngige said that in any given contract, the labour content must be determined.
According to him, we intend to henceforth take a critical look at every council memo to ensure that it addresses the issue of local content.
“This is with a view to ensuring that Federal Government contracts generate jobs for the teeming unemployed Nigerians.
“We will do everything possible to make sure that jobs are not only created but are also decent jobs that can guarantee the safety of Nigerians in their work places.”
Ngige urged members of NSE to key into the economic recovery programme of the Federal Government.
He said they must lead the way in the paradigm shift from dependency on limited white collar jobs to the blue collar sector which was capable of revitalising the nation’s economy.
According to him, you are very important to the society, especially at this time that the government has an economic recovery and growth programme.
“We want the engineers to key into this programme by taking the lead in the shift from dependence on white collar jobs to the blue collar sector.”
The minister, however, expressed the ministry’s readiness to partner with NSE on workplace inspection.
He added that the ministry was in the process of recruiting safety engineers and technicians in its Department of Occupational Safety and Health.
“This is to boost the inspection capacity of the ministry at workplaces and engineering sites.’’
Ngige urged the society to ensure that all workers were insured under the Employee Compensation Act to guarantee their protection and adequate compensation in case of a workplace accident.
Earlier in his remarks, Anyaeji, NSE President expressed the association’s readiness to partner with the ministry in job creation and industrial safety.
Anyaeji said the society would help to identify areas of high volume and revenue imports, especially engineering goods and services, where local capacity and needed resources were available and latent.
“The society will help to promote the establishment and sustenance of these affected sectors with the aim of reversing capital flight, create and retain jobs.”
He added that working in collaboration with the ministry, the society would harness its specialists in health, safety and environmental capacities to ensure that workplace standards were set and sustained.