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Nigeria – Oil firms not complying with contract staffing rules

18 March 2013

The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has called on the government to review current labour law as some companies in the oil and gas sector fail to comply with rules on contract staffing, local media reports.

Chika Onuegbu from the TUC said that contracting workers in this industry poses a challenge. He has called on stricter regulations, saying that some oil companies do not follow guidelines.

“The labour laws are old and need to be reviewed. Some recent judgments by the courts show clearly that there is need to review the laws to reflect current realities. Access to the contracts is clearly something that the unions need to fight against,” said Mr Onuegbu in an interview with Daily Times Nigeria.

“But I have to say that the challenge now is that many oil and gas companies have refused to comply with the provisions of the guidelines. Unfortunately, some oil companies are devising several new ways to undermine and circumvent the guidelines.

“Some even misconstrue the guidelines to mean licence to terminate their regular employees and replace them with contract employees. We have repeatedly asked them to show us the specific provisions in the Nigerian Content Act that allows them to do so.”

According to Mr Onuegbu, guidelines should be clearer and set out precise rules regarding temporary and permanent employment.

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