By Chijioke Okoronkwo
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Thursday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, hosted a delegation of the Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Forum (NECA).
Timothy Olawale, Director-General, NECA, who spoke with State House correspondents afterwards, said that the meeting focused on NECA’s concerns on issues of competitiveness of business and sustainability in Nigeria.
Olawale said the delegation also congratulated Osinbajo on his reelection as vice president and appreciated his representation as the keynote speaker last NECA’s Annual General Meeting(AGM) on July, 2019.
He said the meeting offered the delegation an opportunity to remind the vice president that NECA looked forward to seeing him again in July, 2020.
“There are several of them but key among them are the issue of regulatory bodies that are working at cross purpose.
“The ease of doing business that is being championed by the Office of the Vice President and Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council(PEBEC); what we are saying is that we may not have access to Office of the Vice President every now and then to escalate issues for his attention.
“While also we do not want to be running to the court to seek relief because of the issue of non-accessibility of some of the chief executives of some regulatory bodies, we want a situation where is there a clearing desk on the Office of the Vice President where can escalate these issues and they are resolved amicably in the interest of national development and national economy.
“As a matter of fact, much businesses have been made but what we are saying is that it is not all regulatory bodies of government that are on the same page with government on the desirables.’’
He said that there were instances where some of the regulatory bodies shut down businesses without recourse to dialogue and instances where there were infractions or interventions from the agencies of government outside their enabling Act.
According to Olawale, the rule of law must be respected.
“Even when you have cases in court and there is restraining order; we have instances where some the regulatory bodies go against such restraining orders and still go ahead to disrupt businesses.
“The vice president has said it is something that is doable; the setting up of a clearing desk where these issues can be escalated because he is very desirous of working closely with the private sector and all these issues are issues that can be taken on board,’’ he said.
On minimum wage, he urged the government and labour unions to adopt the principle of give and take as it was very important.