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Nigerian TUC calls for review of labour laws on contract staffing

Nigerian TUC calls for review of labour laws on contract staffing

The Rivers chapter of Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) called for a review of labour laws to reflect current realities on contract staffing in the oil sector.

The Chairman of the chapter, Chika Onuegbu, made the call in an interview. Onuegbu said that contract staffing was a major challenge in the oil and gas sector, adding that curtailing it would address some issues that militated against the industry.

The labour laws are old and need to be reviewed some recent judgments by the courts show clearly that there is need to review the laws to reflect current realities. Access to the contracts is clearly something that the unions need to fight against,’’ he said.

Onuegbu described a situation where the oil companies did not comply with labour guidelines on contract staffing as unhealthy.

But I have to say that the challenge now is that many oil and gas companies have refused to comply with the provisions of the guidelines. Unfortunately, some oil companies are devising several new ways to undermine and circumvent the guidelines.

Some even misconstrue the guidelines to mean licence to terminate their regular employees and replace them with contract employees. We have repeatedly asked them to show us the specific provision(s) in the Nigerian Content Act that allows them to do so,’’ Onuegbu said.

He named some issues addressed by labour guidelines on contract staffing to include differences between permanent and fixed contract jobs, and migration from contract to permanent employment.

Others are unionisation of contract staff in line with extant labour law, collective bargaining, dispute resolution, job security and capacity building for contract staff,’’ he said.


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