The regulations are aimed at enhancing workers’ safety in the industry.
Construction industry is one of the most hazardous industries where workers are more prone to accidents which necessitate adequate safety in the workplace. So far, several regulations and subsidiary legislations have been in existence to provide succour in managing safety regulations at work. In its continuous effort, the Nigerian government has, in a recent development, commenced the designation of the Construction and Allied Works Safety Regulations aimed at enhancing the safety and health of workers in the industry.
The regulations are geared towards regulating activities and operations, minimizing the rate of incidence occurrence in the industry and building collapses across the country. This was revealed by Mr. Olajide Oshundun, the Head and Deputy Director of Press and Public Relations. Also speaking on the safety regulation, Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Ms. Kachollom Daju, asserts that the regulations would also ensure that adequate controls and emergency preparedness are put in place to reduce the impact of such incidences in cases where such occurrences cannot be prevented.
Welfare of the workers is of the utmost concern.
Ms. Daju said that the Federal Executive Council would be provided with confirmed safety regulatory regulations for approval. After the International Labor Organization’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work was revised to include a safe and healthy work environment, she urged the Federal Government to maintain its commitment to promoting the safety and health of workers across all sectors by “Strengthening the National Occupational Safety and Health Legislative framework” with the help of stakeholders.
Permanent Secretary further said that the welfare of the workers is of the utmost concern in this industry, regardless of the scale of the project, and that this issue is of paramount importance. Ms. Daju went on to say that the construction industry is essential to the growth of any nation because it generates such a diverse range of employment opportunities all along its value chain. These employment opportunities include designs, changes, maintenance, repairs, mechanical and electrical engineering.
Safety and health framework will be provided in the sector.
Furthermore, she depicts the picture of the construction industry as one fraught with several potential hazards. She guarantees that the government would make a concerted effort to educate employers, workers, customers, professionals, contractors, and other key players on their legal duty and obligation to adhere to the safety plan. In addition, all Nigerian employees should have access to a safe and healthy workplace, as mandated by the Factories Act, CAP F1 of the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
Construction employees in both the public and private sectors will be protected by the Construction and Allied Works Safety Regulations, as stated by Lauretta Adogu, director of the Ministry’s Occupational Safety and Health Department. According to her, the Regulations would provide a framework for safety and health in the construction sector that would be followed and enforced in order to avoid illnesses, injuries, and other negative impacts on employees’ health that might result from employment in the industry. They would also ensure proper designs and execution of building projects, among other things.
Practice of health and safety is more severe in developing nations.
The practice of Health and Safety remains a key concern for most developing nations’ building industries. Even though many industrialized nations have implemented safety systems, it is nevertheless responsible for a disproportionately high number of workplace deaths and injuries. The problem is much more severe in developing nations when safety and health measures are either in their infancy or not well implemented. While safety programs are sometimes implemented, they are often abandoned without proper monitoring or follow-up due to a lack of safety education and commitment on the part of all stakeholders.
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