Bonds

Ecobank Nigeria Plc workers under the auspices of the National Union of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions Employees (NUBIFIE), have shut down the headquarters of the bank following the disengagement of about 1200 workers.

The workers, with their placards, took to the bank’s head office to protest their disengagement, insisting that the bank should pay their commensurate benefits.

[READ MORE: NSE to dialogue with CBN over banks’ recapitalisation plans]

Complaints of the workers: The workers maintained that the picketing of Ecobank would remain a continuum until the management of the bank ensure that those affected get their severance package.

Ecobank, NUBIFIE, Ecobank's sacked workers
Managing Director (MD), Ecobank Plc, Patrick Akinwuntan

Speaking at the protest, NUBIFIE President, Comrade Anthony Abakpa, said the union would not accept the unilateral peanut of take it or leave it attitude of the bank. Abakpa made known that the most painful part of the whole unlawful retrenchment was the alleged fraud perpetrated by the bank in connivance with the outsourcing firms.

He said picketing would continue today in other branches in Lagos, and if no cogent agreement was reached, “we would shut down their branches nationwide.”

Ecobank’s stance: As reported on Nairametrics, the lender had responded to the allegation that it laid off about 1,200 staff members. In a statement, Ecobank said it did not disengage its workers, contrary to the reports making the rounds.

The bank said that it only decided not to renew the contracts it had with its third-party recruitment agencies after the expiration, “and as such, returned this category of personnel back to the agencies who are their employers.”

(READ ALSO: Ecobank raises $200 million credit facilities)

The statement read, “As a demonstration of the bank’s concern and compassion for the affected personnel of our contractors, palliative measures were put in place by the bank to cushion the effect on them.

These include payment of contract cessation packages of over half a billion Naira already paid through their employers, as well as opportunity given to those with requisite qualification to apply to the bank for permanent employment.

In addition, the bank has offered them the opportunity to become Xpress point agents of Ecobank as a way of further providing them entrepreneurial and financial empowerment. May we state that Ecobank is not obligated to renew its contract with the service providers involved.”

[READ FURTHER: Ecobank deploys digital products for SMEs’ growth]

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