President, Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday in Abuja stated that his administration remains resolute in empowering workers of textile and garment industry in Nigeria.
The president made this remark at the 31 annual national education conference organized by the National Union of Textile Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (NUTGTWN).
The president applauded the Union for her show of sportsmanship that has ensured a harmonious working relationship with the government thereby leading to increased productivity. The president who was represented by Prof Josiah Ajiboye, Registrar, Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria challenged other labour leaders to emulate the model of textile and garment workers.
“Today, I congratulate your Union of the occasion of the 31 annual education conference. It is commendable that your Union devotes significant resources to the education of the members on the right way to fit since we started in 1989.
“There is no doubt that your Unions rise in first state in the continues education of members and they contributed to the well acknowledged, mature and fledging industrial relations system in the textile and garment industry. I am delighted to know that despite the past challenges facing textile sector, industrial peace and harmony has remained intact.
“They have not been a single national strike and work stoppage in the textile industry. It is commendable that through industrial bargaining and regular social dialogue with your employers, your Unions have reportedly signed about 45 nationally agreements as a way of caring for the members. As Nigerian industrial relations are above the challenges of avoidable disputes and strikes among workers, I call on other unions and employers of labour to emulate your model of a peaceful contestation and cooperation between workers and employers in the textile industry.
“During the last June 12 democracy celebration, I made known the decision of the government to create one hundred million jobs in a decade and the Nigerian Union of textile and garment factory have the capacity to transform Nigeria rural economy and we found that the sector is already creating more than 2million jobs as earlier envisaged.
“Our borders are porous and must be effectively manned which is what this government is trying to do. I want you to note that everything is being done by this government to increase our internally generated revenue.
“The federal government signed unprecedented Mous between the service Chiefs of uniform services and the textile and garment manufacturer for the enforcement of the executive order 003. I’m happy to tell you that both military and paramilitary are keying into the local initiatives in making sure that they patronize our local textile and garment industry for their uniforms. The existing 40,000 textile and garment workers must be trained and retrain. I want to use this opportunity to call on the CBN and ITF to collaborate with your Union in providing special funding for your members” he said
The secretary of the Union, Comrade Issa Aremu congratulated the president for his efforts in revatlizing the textile and garment factory, he however challenged government to be more result oriented.
“Next year Nigeria will be 60 years, I think we need to show that evidence of independence. Government have to double up. When China was 60, China ran the fastest rail service ever known in the world. At 60, China has uplifted close to 500 million people out of poverty. At 60, China has gone to the moon. At 60, China is fast developing in terms of stability. At 60, China is producing what it consumes and consuming what it produced. At 60, China have evolved very strong policies against corruption. Some of the stories we hear in Nigeria, if it were to be China, some of these criminals who looted public funds will not be alive today. What is good for China is also good for Nigeria. On Kogi and Bayelsa elections, I want to say today that votes must count” he concluded