By EMAMEH GABRIEL, Abuja
The Senate has disclosed that 45 per cent of the Nigerian workers, in public and private sectors, are engaged as casual staff.
The disclosure was made after a Bill for an Act to provide for the prohibition of casualisation of all forms of employment both in private and public sector in Nigeria passed second reading at the Senate.
The Prohibition of Casualization Bill 2020, was first introduced in March 2020 and sponsored by Senator Ayo Akinyelure. The Bill seeks to end all forms of dehumanizing practices in the labour market, which the sponsor said has become a subject of great concern as employees have been subjected to what he described as “immoral strategy of cutting cost” by employers.
Ayo stated the practice is common place in the telecom, oil and gas, mining, steel, banking and insurance sectors where Nigeria graduates are treated as second class citizens while their foreign counterparts from underdeveloped countries like Indian, Pakistan, Lebanon etc with less qualifications are placed as managers above Nigerian graduates, even in government establishments.
He said over 45 per cent of the workforce in Nigeria are casual workers, therefore, it has become imperative to save vulnerable Nigerians from the evil of involuntary servitude, adding if the Bill is passed into law, it would increase the percentage of taxable adults as well as boost the internally generated revenue (IGR) of government.
In his contribution, Senator Adelere Adeyemi Oriolowo, (Osun West), said the form of employment has a negative impact not only on the individuals engaged but the economy.
According to him, “it gives unequal treatment of workers of the same qualifications but different remuneration.”
Senate Smart Adeyemi (Kogi West) commended the sponsor of the Bill describing the practice as “modern day slavery, oppression and debasement of high qualified Nigerians from humble backgrounds.
“It is a devilish wicked system of employment which is worse in the banking sector.”
He said Nigeria banks recruit girls on casual engagement and send them into corporate prostitution to attract customers and clients.
The Bill was, however, referred to the Committee on Employment, Labour and Productivity to report back within four weeks.