A move towards a drastic shake-up in some sensitive establishments in the country, especially multinational oil firms and companies mainly controlled by Asians is underway as the Federal Government begins the process of combating clandestine and illegal migrationthathasseenundocumented workersbrought into the country illegally by their employers. To this end, the Federal Government, last week, officially deposited with the Director- General of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), Gilbert F. Houngbo, the instruments of ratification of the Migrant Workers (Supplementary Provisions) Convention, 1975 (No. 143) as well as the Private Employment Agencies Convention, 1997 (No. 181).
As part of measures to contain the development in thepast, theNigerianContent Development & Monitoring Board (NCDMB), the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), andtheFederalMinistry of Interior, had, two years ago, declared war against oil and gas companies engaging foreign workers in positions exclusively meant for Nigerian professionals only.
This much was disclosed by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior; the Executive Secretary, NCDMB, and the Director/CEO, DPR, in which the companies involved in the illegal practice were sternly warned about the consequences and directed to acquaint themselves withtheActsandregulations concerning the recruitment quotas in the sector. “It has come to the attention of the Ministry of Interior, the Nigerian Content Development & Monitoring Board (NCDMB) and the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) that Manpower Supply Companies that have been issued Statutory Oil and Gas Industry Service Permits by the DPR to supply NigerianProfessionalsOnly’ are engaged by operators and contractors to supply expatriates in the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry. “The permits clearly indicate that they are not to be used to deploy expatriates under any circumstance or guise. “It is also disturbing that Operators and Major Service Providers promote this illegal practice by entering into contract agreements with these Manpower Supply Companies to source Expatriates for positions which in several cases had been denied quota and earmarked to be occupied by Nigerians. This practice circumvents laid down statutory approval processes and compliance requirements for obtaining Expatriate Quota Positions,” the MDAs noted. They advised companies (Operators, Service Providers etc) engaging manpower suppliers with permits for supply of “Nigerian Professionals Only” to ensure that no expatriates are deployed under such manpower supply contracts under any guise (whether on EQ, TWP or other processes); According to an ILO report obtained by New Telegraph yesterday, by submitting the instruments of ratification, Nigeria becomes the 29th country in the world to ratify Convention No. 143, and the 38th to ratify Convention No. 181.