The National Board for Technical Education says it is making concerted effort to end incessant conflict between labour unions and management of Technical and Vocational Education and Training institutions in the country.
The board’s Executive Secretary, Dr Masa’udu Kazaure, stated this in Kaduna on Tuesday, at the opening of a three-day workshop on: “Labour and Management Relations in Polytechnics, Monotechnics and Similar Institutions”.
He said that the measure was to ensure harmonious work place that guarantees satisfaction of workers and employers aspirations, crucial for enhanced productivity.
He explained that the workshop was organised by the NBTE in collaboration with Projektlink Konsult Ltd. with the theme, “Enhancing Best Practices in Management-Labour Unions Relations in TVET Sector”.
Kazaure, who was represented by Director, Human Resources, Malam Ja’afaru Abubakar, said that the main objective was to maintain better management-union relationship in TVET institutions in the country.
According to him, the workshop will among other things, discuss the provision of extant laws and rules relating to industrial harmony in Nigeria, to help participants imbibe soft skills for better interpersonal relationship at work.
He said: “As you are aware, labour-management conflict has become a feature of Nigerian Institutions in recent past.
“There has been incessant conflict between labour unions and management of respective TVET institutions.
“It is expected that labour and management should work harmoniously together, with a view to achieving common goals of the institutions, however, in most cases, labour and management tend to have divergent views.
“This divergence arises from the different expectations of the two parties and when the interest of either or both parties involved is unsatisfied, industrial crisis becomes imminent.
“Remember, when institutions suffer protracted industrial crises, students are the major victims.”
Adetunji Adepeju, Managing Consultant, Projektlink Konsult Ltd., thanked NBTE for organising the workshop stressing that the measure would address the protracted conflict between labour union and management in higher institutions.
Adepeju called on the participants to be men and women of integrity, transparency and accountability, a panacea for industrial harmony.
He also urged them to always reach a consensus in decision making towards conflict resolution with the interests of students at the centre.
He said: “What we want to see is a situation where a student on gaining admission will know when he will graduate.”
One of the participants, Prof. Mukhtar Kurawa, Rector, Kano State Polytechnic, said that the workshop was timely, adding that it would help both parties to build the needed trust and understanding toward working together for the interests of students.
Okinawa said: “I am confident that after the workshop, management relationship with labour unions will be better.”
Similarly, Malam Isma’il Balarabe, Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, Hassan Usman Katsina Polytechnic, Katsina, was particularly thankful that the workshop brought the two sides of the divide to rub minds and work towards building harmonious relationship.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the participants were rectors, registrars and labour union leaders of polytechnics, monotechnics and other similar institutions.