The International Labour Organisations (ILO) and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) have agreed on a Collaborative Project on Return and Reintegration of Migrants Workers that will contribute to strengthening the effectiveness of trade unions for enhanced engagement in labour migration governance discuss and process
The project expected to build capacity of of trade unions and the media to support return and reintegration of returning migrants workers in context of COVID-19 in Nigeria.
It will also support advocacy and sensitization for sustained participation of workers’ representatives in the provision of support to migrant workers in the post COVID-19 era.
Speaking during the signing agreement, Mrs Vanessa Phala, the Director of the ILO Office for Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone, said the project will further improve workers’ voice in labour migration governance and provide an opportunity to build awareness and capability of trade unions.
Phala while emphasising the need to also build the capacity of media practitioners in reporting labour migration, said there is need for journalists to understand the intricacies of Labour migration governance to enable them report accurately.
She said, “With this implementation agreement, it is an opportunity to also build awareness and capacity of the Trade Union movement in the issue of labour migration, particularly also drawing in the participation of colleagues from the media. So that they also get to understand the new sense of the issues that we are dealing with; because they stand in a very important position to educate, to create awareness. So the need to do so from a point of accurate information, and from the point of factual information about the work we are doing.
“I am happy we are able to forged the partnership so that you can also implement specific interventions targeting workers and involving workers and making ensure there is also a broader understanding on how we can improve your voice in issues regarding the promotion of effective labour migration governance processes.”
She reiterated the commitment of the ILO to continue to provide support towards effective support for trade unions in areas of mutual of interest, such as labour migration governance, child labour and decent work as well as Gender Based Violence and Harassment (GBVH).
In his remarks, NLC Acting General Secretary, Comrade Ismail Bello said the issue of migration concerns all, adding that the Congress will always seek out means to protect rights of workers irrespective of their status
He said, “The issue of migration concerns all. The last time there were cases of xenophobia is South Africa, I told my colleagues that unions have a role to play. A worker any where is a worker. And where workers are hunted, the unions must stand against it.
“On this issue of migration, we are very much glad to be involved and we will take seriously like any of our routine beat. We will our best. We are committed to seeing the project through as partners with the ILO.”