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Ngige Tasks NDE, NSITF to Tackle Recession

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Minister of Labour and Employment Mr Chris Ngige, has warned that Federal Government would not tolerate incompetence from the parastatals and agencies of government, cautioning that the changing times demand dynamic leadership to meet up with the extant challenges.

Mr Ngige said that all hands must be on deck to push the nation out of recession by 2017.

The Minister stated this during his working visit to headquarters of three parastatals under the Ministry of Labour and Employment recently in Abuja.

Addressing the management and staff of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Mr Ngige insisted that at a time Nigeria has slid into recession, the NDE which has a special mandate for job creation ought to distinguish itself in the joint effort to move the country out of recession through massive job creation in the area of agriculture and mining which were hitherto neglected.

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“We must battle recession from all fronts. We must take Nigeria out of recession in 2017 and the National Directorate of Employment shall lead the way. This agency must lead domestic production in agriculture and mining.

“Nigeria must stop the importation of rice and other items we can produce here. Therefore, the NDE must redesign its programmes for the 2017 to align with massive job creation in agriculture, to sufficiently feed the nation and create jobs en mass,” the Minister said.

At the headquarter of the Nigeria Social Industrial Trust Fund (NSITF), the Minister tasked the management of NSITF, to expand the scope of the operation of the funds to capture Nigerians working in the private sector to enable them benefit from the scheme as it is a noble scheme that is aimed at providing insurance cover and compensation for injuries and accident suffered at work places.

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He regretted that certain challenges have made it impossible for NSITF to meet up with his mandate. “The bitter truth is that NSITF has not lived up to expectations. It is high time we changed our old ways so that the fund can fulfilled its mandate. We must show more seriousness and face the work more squarely. He said.

During the visit to the National Productivity Centre (NPC), Mr Ngige observed that; “One of the major problems facing the nation is its inability to adequately measure her productivity. No nation has ever made progress without proper attention to productivity measurement, in such a situation the citizenry is not productivity conscious, with serious consequences on National output and remunerations.”

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The Minister added that the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has productivity as a priority.

Earlier in his remarks, the Director General of the National Productivity Centre, Dr Kashim Yunusa Akor, revealed that the centre is working on development of productivity wage linkage system templat,e aimed at ensuring that wage determination is guided by workers’ productivity amongst other variables.

The Acting Director General of the National Director of Employment, Mr Kunle Obayan in his remark lamented the poor budgetary allocation to his agency, this he said has hampered the ability of the agency to perform optimally

The Acting Managing Director of the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, Ismail Agaka assured the Minister that his agency, come 2017 will work assiduously towards enlisting more companies into the scheme and respond promptly to claims.

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Modupe Gbadeyanka is a fast-rising journalist with Business Post Nigeria. Her passion for journalism is amazing. She is willing to learn more with a view to becoming one of the best pen-pushers in Nigeria. Her role models are the duo of CNN's Richard Quest and Christiane Amanpour.

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