Lagos - Labour leaders on Sunday advised the Federal Government to employ competent people into strategic positions, to enhance the social and economic growth of Nigeria.
The unionists expressed the viewpoint in interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, while reacting to the advice that government should encourage its professionals abroad to return home.
NAN recalls that a former U.S. president, Bill Clinton, had urged the government to encourage its professionals abroad to return and develop the country.
Mr Peter Esele, President, Trade Union Congress (TUC), said that professionals should be encouraged to return and occupy strategic positions in the nation.
"Nigerians are everywhere and in strategic positions.
"It is sad that we respect mediocrity. We do not put round pegs in round holes.
"It is a matter of whom you know and this has affected development of the economy''.
He advised the government to bring back the professionals and employ them in their specialised areas, irrespective of their tribe or region.
Mr Philip Agbonkonkon, the General Secretary, Amalgamated Union of Public, Civil Service, Technical and Recreational Employees (AUCPTRE), also urged the government to encourage professionals to return to Nigeria and give them the opportunity to help develop the nation.
Agbonkonkon said that the economy would remain undeveloped if the country allowed its competent citizens to remain abroad.
The AUCPTRE official said that professionals should be put in their area of specialisation, rather than corrupt and unqualified people.