Sack workers, lose your licence – FG warns Banks

 Breaking News

Sack workers, lose your licence – FG warns Banks

Sack workers, lose your licence – FG warns Banks
June 08
13:07 2016

The federal government yesterday threatened to sanction any bank or telecommunication company which flouts its earlier directive to halt the mass retrenchment of workers without following due process.

Minister of labour and employment, Chris Ngige, while addressing ‎ the 105th session of the International Labour Conference holding in Geneva, Switzerland, said it would be morally wrong for the institutions to sack workers without due process.

LEADERSHIP recalls that the federal government had on Friday issued a directive, urging banks to halt the retrenchment of workers, but some banks allegedly went on with the exercise.
Ngige, who is the leader of the Nigerian delegation to the conference, also frowned at the situation where some of the financial institutions barred their employees from unionising in accordance to the ILO principles and the Nigeria labour law.

The minister, who addressed journalists immediately after his speech to the ILO General Assembly, said: “We will go a step further if they continue. We know what to do. After all, the banks have the licences given by the government. We know what to do. They need to comply. They need to come to the negotiation table.

“We did that in the oil industry and we succeeded. Even if you are going to lay off, there is a way to declare redundancy, there is a process. Section 20 of the Labour Act says it. You must call the unions and discuss with them. You don’t just treat them as slaves in their own country, and you want us to keep quiet.

“We want them to maintain the status quo. As far as I am the minister of labour, I will protect the interest of workers. Same to the telecommunication companies; they are also talking about compiling lists without discussing with anybody.”

On the position of the Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA) – that the companies in the private sector has the sole power to hire and fire and that the power does not reside with the government – Senator Ngige said the organised private sector, represented by NECA, is protecting its own members, and merely expressing its opinion.
He, however, warned that this cannot be done at the detriment of Nigerian workers and the law of the land.

He said: “NECA is protecting their own interest. They are a leg of the tripod; nothing stops them from having their own opinion. They are the section that protect private investors. They are employers’ body and the people I am talking to are also employers.

“The banks’ boards, the banks’ chairmen, the banks’ managing directors are the people I am talking to. I also talk to unions whenever the need arises. In the same order, I also asked the unions not to picket the banks. They had mobilised to picket the banks. It is the job of the government to maintain a peaceful milieu on both sides and that is why I issued the directive.

“From investigation and preliminary report available to us, the banks, the insurance companies, the financial institutions are all laying off. And in some cases, they do not allow their workers to unionize and that is wrong and against the ILO principle.”

He emphasised that the banks and telecom forms had not entered into collective bargaining agreement (CBA), which is the first step before laying off workers.

About Author



Related Articles


No Comments Yet!

There are no comments at the moment, do you want to add one?

Write a comment

Write a Comment