The 1-day National OSH Workshop organized by Occupational Safety and Health Association gathered top government officials, dedicated professionals, experts, and stakeholders from the public and private sector.
The Honourable Minister of State for Health and Social Welfare Dr. Tunji Alausa made his speech during the opening session, charging all the participants to develop new ways of preventing injuries and ill health at work by executing their daily operations safely to avoid fatalities and deaths. The Minister who was represented by Dr. David Atuwo, Director/Senior Technical Assistance to the Honourable minister appreciated the activities of OSHAssociation towards proactive safety and health awareness and advocacy in Nigeria.
Also Dr. Betta Edu, Hon. Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, represented by Mrs funmilayo Adejoorin made her remarks in line with the theme of the workshop, commending the Association for effective promotion of safety best practices in the region, especially in all MDAs in Nigeria. Other dignitaries at the event includes Mr Mahmud Adam Kambari, the Permanent Secretary Welfare Unit, Head of Service of the Federation, Prof. Idris M. Bugaje, Executive Secretary National Board for Technical Education, Mr. Ahmed Bolaji Nagode, Director General National Power Training Institute of Nigeria, Air Cdre FO Bassey, the Commandant Nigeria Airforce Institute of Safety, etc
The objective of the workshop was to raise awareness, share knowledge, and foster collaboration in the pursuit of creating safer working environments within the public and private sector; with injury prevention as the major focus.
The workshop started with a safety briefing, which was given by Mr. Samuel Uzoukwu (MOSHA), followed by the welcome address, which was given by HRH Dr. Amb. Olusegun Aderemi, the regional president OSHAssocitaion Nigeria- region. He thanked everyone for participating and emphasized the need for proactive measures to be taken to ensure that workplace safety is prioritised. Following this, goodwill messages were delivered by the following dignitaries, Mr Mahmud Adam Kambari, Permanent Secretary Welfare Unit Head of Service of the Federation, represented by Dr. Comfort Adeosun Director OSH Department, Dr. Dalhatu Mohammed Ahmed (FOSHA), Chairman Council of Fellows OSHAssociation UK-Nigeria Region, Mr. Ahmed Bolaji Nagode (FOSHA), Director General National Power Training Institute of Nigeria (NAPTIN), etc.
In line with the agenda, Engr. (Dr.) Emmanuel Uwalaka, the OSHAssociation’s Nigeria regional administrator, presented a brief introduction of OSHAssociation UK Nigeria Region, explaining the role and goals of the association. Air Cdre F.O.Bassey, The Commandant Nigeria Air Force Institute of Safety, and Prof. Idris M. Bugaje Executive Secretary (NBTE) made their keynote speeches and It was a robust engagement of intellectuals, scholars, expert, and practitioners in diverse fields.
The workshop featured engaging panel discussion that facilitated the exchange of ideas and best practices. Participants actively shared their experiences, challenges, and success stories, contributing to the enrichment of the body of knowledge. Representatives from various industries and MDAs of government shared valuable concerns, insights, and best practices in safety management. This cross-pollination of ideas was a cornerstone of dedicated efforts to continuously improve safety standards.
During the event, an 8-year-old girl named Zara C. Uwalaka presented her book titled “Ebube the Safety Boy’’, explaining why kids need to know how to stay safe within their environment.
Prof. Rabiu Magaji in his presentation, he shared strategies and initiatives for injury prevention and the role of the community in building a safer and healthier workplace with practical demonstrations.
As part of the event, new members from different categories were inducted into the Association. The investiture speech was read by the Regional President HRH, Dr. Amb. Olusegun Aderemi, followed by the decoration and presentation of awards and certificates to all inductees, as well as closing remarks to end the event.
Following fruitful deliberations at the workshop, the following recommendations were made:
- Participants agreed that Government at all level should promote stronger collaboration between the public and private sectors to improve funding and further strengthen workplace safety education and awareness.
- The Government should address the challenges of safety and insecurity which will reduce the burden of incidents and its consequences in the society.
- Public and private organisations should ensure they educate and train their staff on safety measures and procedures in order to avoid injuries, deaths, loss of properties and resources.
4.The federal government should take the lead and in collaboration with other levels of government, establish and enforce safety guidelines to ensure a safer work environment for workers.
- Government at all Level should put in place mechanism to motivate people to cultivate the habit of proactive safety consciousness by ensuring the provision of safety resources such as safety signs, adequate waste bin within workplace and hand wash system/ sanitizers.
- Organisations should implement health and wellness programmes that promote physical and mental well-being among employees, ultimately reducing the risk of workplace injuries.
- Federal Government should look into the enforcement of OSH regulations and laws, by passing the OSH Bill into Law, which will help organisation adhere to the prescribed standards and face consequences for non-compliance.
- Leaders of various organisation should encourage employees to get involve in the OSH initiatives by promoting a culture of safety, empowering them to report hazards and providing mechanisms for their participation in decision making process.
- Participant agreed that organisations and institutions should raise awareness about the importance of injury prevention at the workplace through regular training programmes and campaigns.
- Organisations should implement the formation of safety committees to regularly review safety practices, address concerns, and develop action plans for continuous improvement in MDAs and within the concerned private organisations in Nigeria.
- Public and Private organisations should encourage their employees to join professional safety bodies such as OSHAssociation, for the purpose of continuous professional development and learning, by so doing preventing injuries and fatalities at workplace.
- To ensure zero incident in the manufacturing industries, OSHAssociation is advised to collaborate with Manufacturing Association of Nigeria (MAN) to ensure effective safety education and awareness.
Participants expressed their profound gratitude to OSHAssociation Nigeria Region for their continuous commitment to promoting a culture of safety across various organizations and institutions. This shared dedication is a significant step toward achieving our collective goal of reducing workplace injuries.