Section 54-58 of the Nigerian Labour Act 2004
Section 54, 55, 56, 57, 58 of the Nigerian Labour Act 2004 is under Part III (Special Classes Of Worker And Miscellaneous Special Provisions) of the act, and collectively titled ‘Employment of women‘.
Section 54 of the Labour Act 2004
(1) In any public or private industrial or commercial undertaking or any branch thereof, or in any agricultural undertaking or any branch thereof, a woman-
(a) shall have the right to leave her work if she produces a medical certificate given by a registered medical practitioner stating that her confinement will probably take place within six weeks;
(b) shall not be permitted to work during the six weeks following her confinement;
(c) if she is absent from her work in pursuance of paragraph (a) or (b) of this subsection and had been continuously employed by her then employer for a period of six months or more immediately prior to her absence, shall be paid not less than fifty per cent of the wages she would have earned if she had not been absent; and
(d) shall in any case, if she is nursing her child, be allowed half an hour twice a day during her working hours for that purpose.
(2) Subsection (1) (c) of this section shall have effect notwithstanding any law relating to the fixing and payment of a minimum wage.
(3) No employer shall be liable, in his capacity as an employer, to pay any medical expenses incurred by a woman during or on account of her pregnancy or confinement.
(4) Where a woman-
(a) is absent from her work in pursuance of subsection (1) (a) or (b) of this section; or
(b) remains absent from her work for a longer period as a result of illness certified by a registered medical practitioner to arise out of her pregnancy or confinement and to render her unfit for work, then, until her absence has exceeded such a period (if any) as may be prescribed, no employer shall give her notice of dismissal during her absence or notice of dismissal expiring during her absence.
(5) In subsection (1) (d) of this section, “child” includes both a legitimate and an illegitimate child.
Section 55 of the Labour Act 2004
(1) Subject to this section, no woman shall be: employed on night work in a public or private industrial undertaking or in any branch thereof, or in any agricultural undertaking or any branch thereof.
(2) Subsection (1) of this section shall not apply to women employed as nurses, in any public or private industrial undertaking or in any agricultural undertaking, nor to women holding responsible positions of management who are not ordinarily engaged in manual labour; and in any proceedings brought under or in connection with the said subsection (1) of this section, it shall be a good defence if it is shown to the satisfaction of the court trying the proceedings that-
(a) the night work in question was due to an interruption of work which it was impossible to foresee and which is not of a recurring character; or
(b) the night work in question had to do with raw material or materials in course of treatment which are subject to rapid deterioration, and it was necessary to preserve such materials from certain loss.
(3) In this section, “night” means-
(a) as respects industrial undertakings, a period of at least eleven (or, where an order under subsection (4) below applies, ten) consecutive hours including the interval between ten o’clock in the evening and five o’clock in the morning; and
(b) as respect agricultural undertakings, a period of at least nine consecutive hours including the interval between nine o’clock in the evening and four o’clock in the morning.
(4) The Minister may by order permit the eleven-hour period mentioned in subsection (3) (a) of this section to be reduced to ten hours on not more than sixty days in any one year in respect of any industrial undertaking if he is satisfied that the undertaking is influenced by the seasons of the year or that the reduction is necessary because of special circumstances.
(5) The Minister may by order exclude from the application of this section, those women covered by a collective agreement in force which permits night work for women, but before making such an order the Minister shall satisfy himself that adequate provision exists for the transportation and protection of the women concerned.
Section 56 of the Labour Act 2004
(1) Subject to subsection (2) of this section, no woman shall be employed on underground work in any mine.
(2) Subsection (1) of this section shall not apply to-
(a) women holding positions of management who do not perform manual labour; or
(b) women employed in health and welfare services; or
(c) women who in course of their studies spend a period of training in underground parts of a mine; or
(d) any other women who may occasionally have to enter the underground parts of a mine for the purposes of a non-manual occupation.
Section 57 of the Labour Act 2004
The Minister may make regulations prohibiting or restricting, subject to such conditions as may be specified in the regulations, the employment of women in any particular type or types of industrial or other undertakings or in any process or work carried on by such undertakings.
Section 58 of the Labour Act 2004
(1) Any person, who, being the proprietor, owner or manager of any industrial, commercial or agricultural undertaking, contravenes any provision of section 54 of this Act shall be guilty of an offence and on conviction shall be liable to a fine not exceeding N200 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding three months, or to both.
(2) Any person who employs a woman in contravention of section 55 (1) or 56 (1) of this Act shall be guilty of an offence and on conviction shall be liable to a fine not exceeding N100 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding one month, or to both.