By Emmanuel Oluwadola
Safe workplace in society is a collective responsibility of the government, workers and representatives of unions.
This was the submission of experts and participants at the 2023 National Safety Conference organised by the Occupational Safety Society of Nigeria, OSSN, yesterday.
The professionals at the event held at Royal Bird Hotels and Tower, Alagbaka, Akure, called on the government to implement the Occupational Safety and Health Policy (OSH) for proper practice and safety in workplaces in the country.
Employers and guardians were advised to always provide safety in the face of occupational and environmental hazards for workers or people around.
Reacting, the OSSN National President, Mr Kolawole Praiseworth, stressed that the society needs adequate awareness to foster safe workplaces, roads, and homes, adding that organisations should buy into safety.
Kolawole lamented the deficiencies of safety equipment such as fire extinguishers and street and traffic lights among others in the workplace and society, contending that insurance of lives must be prioritised.
“Safety, in its broadest sense, is a collective responsibility. It involves a collaborative effort from various sectors, industries and communities.
“To succeed, safety must go beyond playing lip service. The missing link in the structure of many organisations is a functional health and safety management system. Every organisation, private and public, must buy into safety and strive to build a future where safety is not just a goal but a way of life,” he said.
In his part, Dr Olanrewaju
Sam Olayeriju from the Chemical Science Department at Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology, Okitipupa noted that hazardous chemicals in workplaces can be toxic to the health and safety of workers.
He advised all to familiarise themselves with hazardous materials information systems in workplaces, adding that individuals and workers should avoid the use of stimulants during work.
“We should be able to rank chemicals in our organisations based on their toxical level and handle them with utmost care. We should also maintain a good ventilation system.”
He urged workers to always maintain a regular cleaning routine and use personal protective equipment and devices.
Participants, however, lauded the conference, stating that they have gained armful knowledge of how to ensure occupational safety either as an employer or an employee.
For sustainability, they promised to continue to spread awareness to their friends and co-workers for public enlightenment regarding safety at home and workplace.