The Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association has clarified the alleged retrenchment of workers by some Deposit Money Banks in the country.
The representative of employers’ in the private sector, at a press conference on Monday, explained that the issue of retrenchment in the banking sector had emerged at a meeting it held with the representatives of banks and leadership of the Ayuba Wabba-led Nigeria Labour Congress.
The Director-General, NECA, Olusegun Oshinowo, said the meeting was set-up after it received a letter from the NLC, threatening to picket six for anti-labour practices and retrenchment without due process.
The six banks were listed as First Bank of Nigeria Limited, Fidelity Bank Plc, Diamond Bank Plc, FCMB Limited, Ecobank Nigeria and Skye Bank Plc.
According to Oshinowo, findings show that First Bank and Fidelity Bank have not retrenched their workers contrary to media reports and union allegations.
In Diamond Bank, Oshinowo said it appeared workers were laid off after a performance-based exercise was conducted, adding that more investigations would be carried out to ascertain whether it was actually a retrenchment.
The NECA DG said, “We took the case of Diamond Bank and we discovered that it had indeed rationlised some of its members of staff based on its operational need. The NLC and NECA agreed that we needed to dig further into the modus operandi of Diamond Bank as far as that exercise is concerned. We want to really assure ourselves that what Diamond Bank carried out was not a retrenchment but a performance-based exercise.”
On the alleged sacking at the FCMB, Oshinowo said findings showed that retrenchment was conducted and benefits were paid to both the senior and junior workers affected by the exercise.
He added that while the senior workers’ union was informed of the exercise, the junior workers’ union was not aware.
In Skye Bank and Ecobank, the DG noted that an agreement had been reached on redundancy benefits with the unions before the sacking of workers was conducted in the two banks.