Federal oversight necessary over labour affairs: PILDAT conference


Federal oversight is necessary in labour affairs and there should be one policy applicable all over the country, speakers at a consultative session on “Devolution of Labour Ministry: Post 18th Constitutional Amendment impact and challenges”, said on Thursday.
The discussion was organised by Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Training (PILDAT).
Labour experts, researchers, officials of provincial and federal governments and representatives of trade unions participated in the session.
The questions put before the panel included identification of areas of concern, international treaties, EOBI, WWF, trade unions, uniformity of workers benefits in multi-provincial companies and uniform safety and social protection laws.
Ministry of Labour and Manpower Central Labour Adviser Javed Gill said the Industrial Relation Authority (IRA) bill had been finalized, which would be presented in parliament soon.
Representatives of provincial governments were of the opinion that they could handle the issues arising out of labour after the devolution process was completed.
Zafar Iqbal Gondal, EOBI chairman, was of the opinion that EOBI and Workers Welfare Fund should be merged whether they remained at the federal or provincial level.
He believed that no province was capable of handling the EOBI or WWF at the moment.
Participants stressed on uniformity of laws among the provinces, saying it was a window of opportunity for provinces.
Earlier, Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, PILDAT executive director, said after the 18th Amendment, concurrent list would be abolished by June 30, 2011 and the session had been organised to discuss its impacts and challenges relating to labour.
He said the parliamentary committee on constitutional reforms in its nine-month long deliberations did not consult experts of various fields on the possible outcomes of the devolution process.