FG Directs Banks To Suspend Retrenchment Exercise

Chris NgigeThe Federal Government has waded into the ongoing retrenchment in Banks, Insurance and financial institutions in the country, calling for a suspension of the mass purging in the sector.
Within the last one week, Diamond and Ecobank Nigeria have sacked 200 and 1,040 members of staff respectively amid an economic crisis. Another leading bank, First Bank, a subsidiary of FBN Holdings, also revealed plans to reduce its workforce by 1,000 staff.
But the Federal Government on Friday directed a suspension of the retrenchment exercises pending the outcome of conciliatory meetings in the industry.
The Minister of Labour, Senator Chris Ngige, made the government’s position known in a statement he personally signed and issued to journalists in Abuja.
The statement reads in part: “Following spate of petitions and complaints from stakeholders in the banking, insurance and financial institutions, I hereby direct the suspension of the on-going retrenchment pending the outcome of the conciliatory meetings in the industry.
“This is as a result of the apprehension by my office of the various disputes in the sector in accordance and in compliance with the provisions of the labour laws of Nigeria”.
Mr. Ngige noted that the decision was further hinged on the fact that the continued retrenchment and redundancy by the sector were jeopardising the outcome of the reconciliatory and mediatory processes undertaken by the ministry.
“In this wise, all the retrenchments and redundancies done in the last four months and all proposed ones should be put on hold.
“Pending the outcome of the proposed stakeholders’ summit for the banking, insurance and financial institutions’ employers and employees, slated for the first week of July 2”, he said.
The statement, however, called on all parties in the interest of industrial peace and harmony, to maintain the status-quo ante-belum. (NAN)