Posted by News Express | 2 May 2017 | 1,380 times
Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, has assured the international community of the irrevocable commitment by President Muhamadu Buhari’s administration towards growing Nigeria’s economy through strategic initiatives.
Ngige gave the assurance while delivering an address titled, ‘Investment in employment and social security for harnessing demographic dividend’, at the ongoing 2nd Ordinary session of the specialised technical committee on social development, labour and employment holding in Algiers, Algeria.
He expressed optimism that the recently released Medium Term Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) by the present administration is a paradigm shift in this direction.
“The present administration in Nigeria has demonstrated its capacity to exploit our huge population for wealth creation and economic growth. This explains the capacity shown so far for an early exit from recession.
“Our shift is the engagement of our large population in well-articulated diversification programme which has shifted attention to agriculture and mining, in a process intended to be driven by diverse skills acquisition and subsequent job creation,” Ngige said.
The Minister stressed that Nigeria was resolute in exploiting the untapped potentials of huge population to grow the economy through dynamic micro-economic policies.
“The focus of the present administration in Nigeria is to invest in our huge population through massive job creation, youth empowerment, social inclusion and strengthening of our educational and health system so as to achieve macro-economic stability and diversification.
“This is a pathway to building a global competitive economy that can stimulate private sector investments, infrastructural renewal, a major pathway to spend out of recession and improve business environment,” he said.
According to him, concerted efforts were being made to increase access to decent work to Nigerians through the implementation of National Policy on Employment whose document was reviewed in 2016 while creating jobs and skills acquisition centres which targets the 774 Local Government Areas as operational base.
He added that 15 obsolete and retrogressive labour laws, some of which dates back to the colonial era have been sent to the National Assembly for review.
The Minister enumerated other government efforts towards exploiting Nigeria’s huge population for jobs and skills development to include a nationwide stop-gap jobs for unskilled persons through interventionist schemes in agriculture and mining, skills development and competency upgrade, reduction of miss-match between graduate skills and demands in modern labour market as well as the N-power programme, noting that women constitute a large percent of the beneficiaries of these different programmes.
On social security, the Minister said that beyond a National Policy on Social Protection and Social Security which was conceived to drive universal human rights, inclusiveness and wealth re-distribution, the National Social Insurance Trust Fund, (NSITF), the National Health Insurance Scheme, (NHIS), Pension Commission and National Social Investment Programmes remain core government agencies effectively providing social protection for vulnerable persons within their respective purviews.
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