By NBF News

IN a significant step towards the fulfillment of his promise to provide better working conditions for Nigeria's workers, President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday signed the new Employees' Compensation Act into law at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.The new law repeals the Workmen's Compensation Act of 2004.

A statement from the office of the presidential spokesman said the new law's main objective is to provide  a more open and fair system of 'guaranteed and adequate compensation for all employees or their dependants for any death, injury, disease or disability arising out of or in the course of employment.'

The Employees Compensation Act, 2010 also provides for the establishment and maintenance of a solvent compensation fund managed in the interest of employees and employers.

It seeks to combine the efforts and resources of relevant stakeholders for the prevention of workplace disabilities as well as the enforcement of occupational safety and health standards.

The provisions of the new Employees' Compensation Act  which was passed by both Houses of the National Assembly late last year, apply to all employers and employees in the public and private sectors in Nigeria.

The implementation of the Act and the management of the compensation fund established under Section 56 of  the Act are to be overseen by the Management Board of the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSIFT ).

Also, speaking with The Guardian in an interview, the Managing Director of NSIFT, Alhaji Abubakar Munir who lauded the signing commended the President for coming to the aid of hapless workers who are neglected when they sustain serious injuries in the course of carrying out the duties.

He added that the Fund will hit the ground running, explaining that logistics had been put in place to ensure its effective take-off.