Labour minister woos UAE for skilled workers

By Martha Obi

Building on the recent successful visit of President Muhammadu Buhari to the United Arab Emirates, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige has urged that country to activate the process of legal migration of skilled Nigerian middle level workers under the International Labour Migration guidelines.

“In consonance with the spirit of the relationship which exists between our two countries, and which President, Muhammadu Buhari has further bolstered with his recent official visit to the United Arab Emirates and considering the series of agreements signed in the areas of trade, economic development, investment and industry as well as in legal cooperation among others, my ministry wishes to  request that you activate the process of labour  migration and employment into the UAE  for skilled Nigerian  workers”,  he said.

Mr Ngige spoke in Abuja during a condolence visit by the UAE’s ambassador to Nigeria,   Mahmood Mohammed Almahmood on the passing away of the late Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Mr James Ocholi .

It is our desire to export skilled middle level workers, whether they are carpenters, bricklayers, tillers, painters etc. We want to export them officially under the International Labour Migration Organization guidelines just like we are trying to do with Qatar.   No doubt , we have high skilled Nigerian professionals  like engineers , medical doctors, nurses  and others already  in your country but we want to push people from the  middle cadre who have  blue collar skills,” he said.

UAE Ambassador Mahmood Mohammed presents a gift to Labour minister, Chris Ngige
UAE ‘s Ambassador Mahmood Mohammed presents a gift to Labour minister, Chris Ngige

The Minister reiterated the common commitment of Nigeria and the UAE to fighting global terrorism.

” We are together in condemning terrorist attacks all over the world, especially in Nigeria where boko haram has destabilized the entire North East zone of the country, displacing millions and causing job losses. We seek for the assistance of your country in rehabilitating the displaced and in reconstructing their communities, “

In his remarks, Ambassador Mahmood Mohammed promised the cooperation of his country in the promotion of trade and other bilateral relations with Nigeria.