The General Manager, Land Craft Industries Limited, Mr. Narayan Vasu Pillai has said that the safety of workers is majorly the employer’s responsibility which must be handled seriously.
Pillai, an Indian, said this in a chat with Safety Record Newspaper at the Ikorodu, Lagos premises of the company on Thursday, January 19.
This is against the backdrop of recorded cases of safety lapses leading to injuries and fatalities in manufacturing industries owned by foreigners, especially Indian, Lebanese, and Chinese nationals across Nigeria.
Safety Record Newspaper recalls that two workers of Amuwo Odofin, Lagos-based Chinese firm, Hongxing Steel Company Limited were killed in 2015 due to industrial hazards.
Land Craft Industries Limited manufactures TMT (Thermos Mechanically Treated) bars, rod and industrial Gas. The company was incorporated in 2007 and commenced operation in 2009.
Pillai stated that the right personal protective equipment (PPE) are procured by his company and put to use by the workers.
Furthermore, he affirmed that safety officers are engaged by the company and given free hand to drive safety compliance by identifying possible risks to the workers and ensuring the PPEs are well utilised.
“We have Safety Officers and they know what is expected of them,” Pillai said.
He also said that the company strictly enforces its rule prohibiting workers’ movements wherever there are movements of cranes within the work environment.
Pillai, who also handles all production processes in the organisation, said his company’s dedication to upholding safety standards and making it a culture is borne out of its belief that it is cheaper to prevent than to manage industrial accidents.
He said, “I am always strict on safety processes in Land Craft Steel Company.
“This is because safety is most paramount and my advice to my workers and other individuals has always been that accident should be prevented from occurring in a workplace.
“We can’t create human life, so I see no reason why somebody’s life should be taken.”
He said that the company complies with the provisions of the Employee’s Compensation Act 2010 when handling the compensation package of workers injured in the course of duty, although it is focused on preventing conditions that pre-dispose workers to injury or death.
On the challenges facing the steel industry in Nigeria, Pillai identified motivation as chief among many.
“The challenges of steel industries are many; the basic issue is that there is no motivation. Steels are available in the Eastern part of the country but are not exploited in the country.
“Manufacturing steel industries in Nigeria are of secondary production not primary production.
“The primary production involves mining iron and producing steel from iron. But the secondary production involves taking iron scrap and reproducing it.
“In this country we don’t have primary production steel company,” he said.