CDAR ADVOCATES POLICY ON REMITTANCE INFLOWS TO NIGERIA
By NAOMI UZOR
The Director, Centre for Demographic and Allied Research (CDAR) of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN), Professor Cletus Agu has stressed the need for government to put in place an effective migration policy targeted towards reducing income inequality between the urban and rural areas.
Professor Agu said this at a workshop held in Abuja with the theme 'International Remittances, Poverty and Inequality: The West African Case (IRPI-TWAC)', designed to disseminate the preliminary findings of the study conducted by the Centre and supported by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC).
He noted that remittances are most often earmarked for specific purposes like subsidising general household expenses and household education spending, adding that the findings revealed that recipients of remittances have lower poverty compared to similar households that did not receive remittances.
The difference, accoridng to him, is not statistically significant and recipients are mainly responsible youths that can be trusted who belong to the active population.
A Senior Research Fellow at the Centre, Mr. Jude Chukwu who also presented a paper at the workshop called on the government to fully domesticate the relevant migration laws already in use in some countries to provide a sound national level framework for migration policy and practice.
Chukwu said the process of formulating a national migration policy led to a draft National Policy on Migration which was discussed in a national conference in April 2007 but the draft policy was not signed by the appropriate authorities.
'The imperativeness of regulating migration and its attendant employment issues necessitates the existence of rules and regulations that all stakeholders must abide with, compelled Nigeria to ratify both the Migration for employment Convention, 1949 (No. 97) of the International Labour Organization and the United Nation convention on the protection of the inalienable rights of all migrant workers and members of their families, 1990. Some relevant legal standards in the above instruments have been incorporated into national legislation,' he noted