NLC, NECA Withdraw Picketing Notice on Six Commercial Banks

  • Await FG’s tripartite meeting

Paul Obi in Abuja

In a move to douse tension in the banking sector, the Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) have withdrawn its earlier notice to picket some of the commercial banks engaged in the mass sack of workers.

NLC’s decision to shelve the planned picketing came on the heels of a stakeholders meeting proposed by the Ministry of Labour and Employment, likely to take place first week of July 2016.

NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, told journalists yesterday in Abuja that “they decided to halt action because the affected banks had not officially carried out the redundancy and had given the assurance that all the processes of the law would be followed before carrying out any such exercise.

Labour had planned to disrupt the operations of six commercial banks, namely Fidelity Bank, Diamond Bank, First City Monument Bank, First Bank, Ecobank and Skye Bank over the issue of mass retrenchment and redundancy in the banking sector on June 15,2016.

Wabba, at a joint press briefing with the Director General of NECA, Abiodun Oshinowo, yesterday in Abuja, stated that the National Union of Banks, Insurance, and Financial Institutions Employees (NUBIFE) including other affiliate unions had informed the NLC headquarters of the extent of its engagement with the affected banks on the contentious issues.

He said the meeting “dwelt on the process, the procedure and the position of law on the declaration of redundancy, non unionisation of workers and the payment of protection fees by some of the banks and agreed that the issues be taken to the federal government’s meeting for resolution.

Oshinowo, on his part observed that “NECA and the NLC came to a compromise that employers wanting to retrench workers must respect the rights of workers as enshrined in Section 20 of the Labour Act.

He maintained that “it was also the decision of the meeting that employers who had carried out retrenchments without following due procedure should ensure that the right thing was done.”

Oshinowo further stressed that “the meeting also identified the issue of non-unionisation of workers as a major problem in the banking sector which should be tackled headlong.”