The Factories Act Cap F1 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 was solely enacted for the protection of the occupational safety and health of Nigerian workers in all occupations.
The Factories Act of 1990 was promulgated as Decree No. 16 of 1987 (now Factories Act Cap F1 LFN 2004) the Act is the primary legislation for the protection of the safety, health and welfare of workers. It has as its broad objective; to make elaborate provisions for the health, safety and welfare of the workers exposed to occupational hazards by taking measures to prevent accidents and injuries.
The specific objectives of the Act as stated in its preamble are as follows:
- To provide for factory workers and a wider spectrum of workers and other professionals exposed to occupational hazards, but for whom no adequate provision had been formerly made;
- To make adequate provision regarding the safety of workers to which the Act implies; and
- To impose penalties for any breach of its provision.
The Act is divided into eleven sections;
- part I makes provision for the registration, appointment of factories board and appeal to the board from the decisions of the director of factories;
- part ll deals with general provisions for the health of workers in the factories, it includes issues such as cleanliness, overcrowding, ventilation, lighting, drainage, sanitary conveniences and the duty of inspectors as to sanitary defects;
- part lll comprises of general safety provisions for workers working with machines and other equipments; part lV includes provisions for welfare in general;
- part V deals with special provisions and regulations on health, safety and welfare;
- part Vl provides for notification, investigation of accidents and industrial diseases;
- part Vll enumerates provisions for special applications, extensions and miscellaneous provisions of the Act;
- part Vlll deals with provisions for general register and preservation of registers and records, it also mandates the posting of abstract of the Acts, regulations and notices;
- part lX provides for general administration of the Act;
- part X states provisions that deal with offences, penalties and legal proceedings;
- Finally, part XI encompasses the application of the Act to factories belonging to the Government of the Federation of state.