Sen. Chris Ngige, Minister of Labour and Employment has decried the lack of synergy among the Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA) and other employers of labour.
Ngige said this on Thursday in Abuja at a news conference while giving account of Nigeria’s participation at the recently concluded International Labour Organisation Conference in Geneva, Switzerland.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that NECA celebrated its 60th anniversary on July 5.
According to him, I have a critical view that NECA has not done what it is supposed to do in 60 years of its existence. I told them that at their anniversary in Lagos.
“I said so because there are a lot of the manufacturers who own industries under the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) and the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce (NACCIMA).
“They are not members of NECA and there is no synergy between them and NECA. How can we be going to Geneva and MAN and NACCIMA are not part of the Employers Association? It leaves a very big vacuum.
“In 60 years, what has NECA done to prepare people in the informal sector because they are supposed to be handling the private sector employers.
“Even people who are trading are supposed to be part of NECA because they are employers and they are not in NECA net, such as proprietors of hotels, among others.’’
The minister said that he had told NECA that he was not satisfied that in the past 60 years they still operated only in Lagos.
He decried the non planting of NECA offices in places such as Sokoto, Kano, Nnewi, and Kaduna among other states, in spite of being known for its textile factories.
“Why do they not have branch offices there? We agree that today it is the era of technology and digitasation and so, you can capture people from where ever you are.
“But then, you still need contact offices. You still need to do some sensitisation and bring employers in. I told NECA that it is not for the ministry to do sensitisation for them, ”Ngige said.
He also said that the nation recorded a lot of gains from the recently concluded 2017 International Labour Conference in Geneva.
Ngige noted that this was the first time the country was having three representatives on the Governing Board of the ILO.
He also dismissed reports that the Nigerian Government lost its bid to be on the ILO Governing Board and was compensated with the position of deputy.
He said that the decision to go for deputy was taken at a high diplomatic level of the African Union.
“The African Union wanted African countries that have never been on the board to be represented on the ILO board.
“Nigeria has been titular member of the ILO for cumulative of 27 years and left the board about ten years ago to give Ghana the opportunity,’’ he said.