Section 23



Coercive, unfair or deceptive recruitment

This provision prohibits recruitment by intermediaries except those under permit or license, either for work in Nigeria or abroad.


Licenses granted by the Minister are valid for 12 months and are subject to renewal. Under section 47, engaging in recruitment without a license is punished with a fine of up to 2,000 naira, or to imprisonment for up to 5 years, or both.

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Section 23. Prohibition of recruiting except under permit or licence.

(1) Subject to this section and S 48 of this Act, no person or association shall recruit any citizen for employment as a worker in Nigeria or elsewhere, except in pursuance of an employer’s permit or recruiter’s licence

(2) where a worker

(a) is employed by an undertaking for which it is proposed that he should recruit other workers

(b) is formally comissioned in the writing by his employer to recruit other workers for the undertaking

(c) does not receive any renumeration or other advantage from recruiting and

(d) does not make advances of wages to the workers he recruits.

The Minister may waive the need for a permit or licence under (1) of this section and issue to the worker a certificate to recruit citizens for service as workers in Nigeria subject too such conditions (which shall be endorsed on the certificate) as the Minister thinks fit.

(3) If any worker to whom a certificate has been ussued under (2) of this section is convicted of an offence under section 46 or 47 of this Act, the Minister may fortwith cancel the certificate.

Law /Nigeria / Labour Act

The Nigerian Labour Act applies to all workers and to all employers, with the exception of the armed forces, the Police, prison staff and intelligence agencies. The Act was adopted in 1971, replacing the Labour Code Act and consolidating the law relating to labour and employment in Nigeria. The Act specifically prohibits forced or compulsory labour, and makes provision for the rights and entitlements of workers, the terms and conditions of employment including annual leave, maternity and sick leave, recruitment processes, working hours, payment of wages, and health and safety. Under the Act, it has also been made illegal for employers to prevent their employees from joining trade unions.