The Minister of Labour and Productivity Dr.Chris Ngige has dropped what critics will consider a howler and another indication that the current government may be clueless. Here is what he was reported to have said.
“Now I think it is important to state that we should not lay off staff at this critical stage. Because if we do, we will be creating more problems. You should try to micro-manage and retain the staff that you have now. Because no matter how much we accommodate, government alone cannot be the largest employer of labour. The largest employer of labour is, of course, the private sector.”
According to Punch, Dr. Chris Ngige, who was represented by his Minister for State James Ocholi, said this at the Investiture Ceremony of Engr. Otis Anyaeji as the 30th President of the Nigerian Society of Engineers in Abuja.
For most critics, this statement represents another confirmation that the current government does not understand the severity of the economic situation in the country and seems out of touch with the travails corporate Nigeria is facing. Imploring businesses to stop sacking staff probably shows how inept the government is when it comes to using the right rhetoric to drive home its points. Foreign investors are also reading this and wondering if Nigeria has the right calibre of people in Government.