OrderpaperToday- A bill to eradicate age discrimination against job seekers in Federal Government agencies has scaled its second reading in the House of Representatives.
The six-claused bill, which was debated during plenary on Wednesday, seeks to provide a regulatory framework that removes age discrimination against job seekers in Federal Government owned agencies and organisations.
It will allow for vibrant young Nigerians to gain employment into the the institutions and agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Other areas which the bill is targeted at includes ensuring that no one is discriminated against on account of their age or the circumstances surrounding their birth.
The sponsor of the Bill, Mr. Sergius Ogun (PDP, Edo) explained that the rationale for the bill is to ensure that no artificial barrier is allowed to preponderate over merit, which rarely has anything to do with age.
“I think it is criminal for the Federal Government to have age discrimination in employment. Even if there is age discrimination in securing jobs, the Federal Government job is not supposed to be a part of this,” said Mr. Ogun.
The bill received wide applause from lawmakers who spoke on the floor.
According to Mr. Babajimi Benson (APC, Lagos), this discrimination has hindered Nigerian youths from applying for civil service jobs, which should not be.
“This bill is a very important one particularly with the situation of unemployment the country is facing. The only area I disagree is the aspect of military and paramilitary recruitment. Here, we need young and abled bodied men to carry out this work,” said Mr. Datti Garba (APC, Kaduna).
Other contributors like Mr. Istifanus Gyang (PDP, Plateau) called for the need to put a stiffer penalty to Ministries, Departments and Agencies that fail to comply with the law when assented.
The bill was adopted by the House majority when Speaker Yakubu Dogara put it to voice vote and was therefore referred to the House committee on Labour, Employment and Productivity for further legislative inputs.