ABUJA – A bill seeking to amend the Labour Act 2004 on Thursday scaled second reading in the House of Representatives.
The bill seeks to provide a time frame for the regulation of casual or temporary employment to permanent status by all employers of labour in Nigeria.
The bill also seeks to ensure that casual workers after two years are given permanent status.
Leading debate on the general principle of the bill, Rep.Emmanuel Jime (APC-Benue), said that the bill, if passed, would ensure that casual workers get permanent employment after a time frame.
The lawmaker stressed that the bill was meant to address the rising incidence of casualisation (short term jobs) of workers in the country.
He noted that there are two categories of workers; short term and permanent workers.
He said that the amendment sought was in respect of the short term workers.
“There is a clear violation of the rights of these casual workers, since they are not entitled to full benefits.
“This amendment has opened up the protection of the Nigerian workers by way of a legal backing,” he said.
He urged his colleagues to support the bill, saying it is for the interest of all Nigerian workers.
Rep. Nkiruka Onyejiocha (PDP-Abia), who supported Jime’s views, agreed that the bill would protect Nigerian workers.
She said that bill would enable Nigerian workers, particularly the casual workers, to get full employment benefits.
The bill was, however, opposed by Rep. Francis Enekorogha (PDP-Delta), saying it could create series of problems than solving it.
The opposition notwithstanding, the bill scaled second reading and the Deputy Speaker, Emeka Ihedioha, referred it to the Committee on Labour and Productivity for more input. (NAN)