Fair Treatment

Equal Pay

According to the constitution, it is the duty of the state to ensure there is equal pay for equal work without discrimination on account of sex, or on any other ground. However, no implementing legislation has been enacted so far. A Labour Standards Bill, submitted in the National Assembly in 2008, had provision on equal pay for equal work however it has not been passed.

Source: 17(3) Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999


The constitution of Nigeria prohibits discrimination on the grounds of place of origin, sex, religion, status, ethnic or linguistic association or ties. It is the duty of the state to promote national integration by providing adequate facilities, equal opportunities and rights to all the citizens without discrimination. Citizens of Nigeria must not be subject to any disability or deprivation on discriminatory grounds.

There is no specific legal provision regarding discriminatory behavior while hiring an employee. However, according to the Constitution, it is the duty of the state to ensure equal opportunity for securing adequate means of livelihood as well as adequate opportunity to secure suitable employment, for all the citizens without any discrimination. Also, the state must ensure equal wage for equal amount of work without gender discrimination or discrimination on any other ground.

HIV and AIDS (Anti-Discrimination) Act, 2014 prohibits discrimination on the basis of real or perceived HIV status concerning access to and continued employment, conditions of employment, employment benefits, comprehensive health services, education, use of public facilities and other social services, provided by the employer, individual, community, government or any other establishment.

Furthermore, the Labour Act expressly prohibits employers from discriminating against employees by virtue of their union membership. Labour Act prohibits an employer to cause the dismissal or otherwise prejudice a worker by reason of trade union membership; because of trade union activities outside working hours (or with the consent of employer during the working hours); or because he has lost the trade union membership or has refused to or is unable to become a member of trade union. Discrimination against pregnant women is also expressly prohibited in the Labour Act.

Under the Nigerian with disabilities Decree 1993, employers are required to reserve 10% quota for disabled persons. Law gives 15% tax deduction to those private sector employers who employ disabled persons in above quota. Employers are further prohibited from discriminating against disabled persons.

If a worker believes he/she has been discriminated against on any of the above referred grounds, he/she can bring a case a before the National Industrial Court which can award compensation if discrimination is proven.

Source: §15(2,3), 17(3) & 42 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999; §3(1) of the HIV and AIDS (Anti-Discrimination) Act, 2014; §9(6) and 54(4) of the Labour Act (Cap L1 LFN 2004)

Equal Choice of Profession

Labour law ensures equal rights and same regulations of employment for both men and women with the exception that women cannot work at night and may not be employed on underground work in mines.

If an employer is found guilty of an offence, on conviction he is liable to fine or imprisonment as specified by the law.

Source: §55-58 of the Labour Act (Cap L1 LFN 2004)