With the relaxation of lockdown by the federal government, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), has urged members to adhere strictly to the safety protocols issued by the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), and Presidential Task Force (PTF), as factories resume operations.
According to Ambrose Oruche, the acting director-general of MAN, the safety protocol should be adhered to, to avoid disruptions in production. Oruche noted that reports about a manufacturing firm allegedly holding workers against their will to operate in its factory during the national lockdown following the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic, defies the guidelines and safety protocols.
He said the report is contrary to the directives of MAN to its members, especially manufacturers of essential items, who were permitted to operate during the lockdown.
“Members were strictly advised to adhere to safety standards and protocols released by the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), and Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19.
“MAN has been proactive in advising its members to ensure that they sensitize and educate their workforce on the need to comply with NCDC and various Government guidelines on the operation of manufacturing establishments. They were advised to provide requisite facilities for the prevention of COVID-19 in line with extant guidelines of the NCDC.
“In addition, MAN has instructively communicated to her members at the initial phase of easing of lockdown that their establishments should put in place control measures to flatten the curve or reduce the risk of further spreading of COVID-19 as well as what employers and businesses can do to protect the health and safety of staff. The communication to its members also speaks to adherence to guidelines in a case of staff member(s) within an organization suspected with symptoms of Covid-19.
“MAN believes that human lives cannot be equated to wealth and thus manufacturing activities should take place within the safest environment,” he added. Oruche urged member-companies to develop an infectious disease preparedness action plan to reduce the risk of exposure in the workplace and communicate it to all staff members.