The National Directorate of Employment has been directed to re-design and channel its programme to rural communities in Nigeria.
This is to create multiple job opportunities to the citizens in the area of Agriculture and Manning.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, who gave the directive, said that the first thing to tackle in any country was food security. According to him, ”the present government is taking food security very serious, before any other things.”
According to the minister, “we must stop rice importation by 2017 by encouraging our local farmers. I want everybody to sit up in this 2017 so that we can battle unemployment, tackle insecurity, ban importation of what we can produce.”
He was speaking after he paid a working visit to three parastatals under his Ministry in Abuja, the nations’ capital.
The parastatals include National Productivity Centre, National Directorate of Employment and Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund
He said it was important to study and evaluates the performance of each of the parastatal before embarking on such tour.
He also said that the Ministry of Labour and Productivity had gotten job centres in the 2017 Budget.
He urged the NDE management to always engage the rural public in town hall meeting to highlight and examine their challenges and needs.
The Acting Director General of NDE, Kunle Obanya assured the Minister that the parastatal was committed to the change agenda of the present Government and would make sure it follow directive.
National Productivity Centre Dr. Ngige said that the Centre was very critical, as far as Labour matter was concern in terms of measurement and evaluation of Productivity across the country.
The Minister promises to engage the state governors and ensure that the Centre secure offices in the thirty six State of the Federation.
“One of the challenges facing Nigeria is that, they are unable to measure productivity. I’m here to encourage the Centre because some people in the country appreciate the work of the centre,” he stated.
He also expressed dissatisfaction with the budget allocated to the NPC over the years, saying the Centre budget has increase in the 2017 appropriation bill.
The Director General of the NPC, Dr. Kashim Akor said that the Centre had the singular task of articulating and implementing sustainable programmes that would stimulate and promote productivity growth in the economy, as well as engender international competitiveness.
While at the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund, NSITF, the minister of Labour and Employment has expressed dissatisfaction with operation of the Fund, urging them to review their mode of operation so that many people could benefit from the scheme.
Dr. Ngige instructed NSITF to charge as many companies to court by January next year, insisting that most of the companies are cheating on their workers, as the workers do not know their right from their employers.
The Acting General Manager of NSITF, Mr. Ismail Mohammed assured the minister that they would re-double their effort to generate more funds from January 2017.