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TUC urges ILO convention enforcement to combat workplace harassment

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The President of the Trade Union Congress, Festus Osifo, has urged for the rigorous implementation of the International Labour Organisation Convention C-190 and Recommendation 206, which aim to guarantee the right to a workplace free from violence and harassment for all individuals.

Osifo emphasized that only through the implementation and enforcement of these recommendations can gender-based violence and harassment in the workplace be eradicated. 

He made this call in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, during the three-day 2023 Annual Seminar organized by the TUC Women Commission, themed “Projecting Ways to Eliminate Gender-based Violence and Harassment from the World of Work, Implementation and Enforcement of ILO C-190 R 206.”

The TUC President criticized the behavior of ILO member states that violate Recommendation 206, expressing concern that violence and harassment have persisted in workplaces despite the treaty. 

He also noted with dismay that even at the local level, practices such as female genital mutilation and harmful widowhood practices have persisted despite numerous legislative and policy instruments implemented by federal and state governments.

Congress is concerned that despite ILO Conventions 190 and R 206, which address the right of everyone to a world of work free from violence and harassment, it has continued,” Osifo stated.

Locally, the federal and state governments have adopted several legislative and policy instruments, including the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act of 2025, which also prohibits female genital mutilation, harmful widowhood practices, etc., but all the ugly incidents have persisted,” he added.

By implementing these conventions, recommendations, and embracing the strategies listed above, gender-based violence and harassment in the world of work can be eliminated, and we will have a safer and more inclusive environment for everyone,” Osifo concluded.

Osifo described gender-based violence as a serious issue and emphasized that eliminating it requires a concerted effort from all stakeholders. 

To combat gender-based violence, Osifo recommended strengthening existing legal frameworks, providing training and retraining, and fostering collaboration and partnerships among organizations, as well as promoting employee-employer collaboration.

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